Album of the Week 17-21 February
Alabaster DePlume – To Cy & Lee: Instrumentals Vol. 1 [International Anthem] Our album of the week is Worldwide FM family member Alabaster DePlume‘s To Cy & Lee: Instrumentals Vol. 1, that will be out on the 28th of February. Alabaster DePlume is a Manchester-born, London-based bandleader, composer, saxophonist, activist and orator. He’s a resident…
Alabaster DePlume – To Cy & Lee: Instrumentals Vol. 1 [International Anthem]
Alabaster DePlume is a Manchester-born, London-based bandleader, composer, saxophonist, activist and orator. He’s a resident at the legendary London creative hub Total Refreshment Centre, a recording artist for the off-grid, Scottish Hebridean island label Lost Map, and now the latest arrival into Chicago-based International Anthem’s growing family of progressive musical explorationists. Whilst much of his music contains vocals – often whispered imperatives – this is a collection of instrumentals, drenched in feeling and recorded over four albums and eight earth years in cities across the UK.
The music of To Cy & Lee: Instrumentals Vol. 1 contains naturally elegant orchestration wrapped around something visceral and primordial. Swirled inside the 11 pieces are shades of Japanese Min’yo folk, Celtic folk, the Ethio-jazz of saxophonist Getatchew Mekurya and hints of the pan-human ‘ancient music’ that sat underneath Arthur Russell’s melodies on First Thought, Best Thought. The music is filled with space, inspired, he says, by computer games and Japanese animation, particularly Joe Hisaishi’s soundtrack for Studio Ghibli’s Castle In The Sky.
He ran music sessions for Cy, Lee and their friends. “People would focus on a central point, tuning in to one another. There are things we can’t put into words, which can be expressed with sound and music. These guys have fewer words than us, some of them have none. When we put some feelings into a music expression – that’s liberation.”
It’s a method he uses in live shows wherever possible, placing himself and the musicians in the round. The aim is to maximise the creative benefits that a community of players and listeners can bring to the music. It’s a collectivist and humanist approach to making music that sits underneath everything he does. This is music made for a reason, and those reasons include – to paraphrase some of the catchphrases he uses both on stage and in conversation – mixing people up, asking everyone to be as much themselves as they possibly can and the hardcore encouragement expressed in his most popular line, shouted back at him by audiences wherever he goes: “You’re doing very well!”
– words by Emma Warren.
1. Visit Croatia
2. What’s Missing
3. Song of the Foundling
4. Whisky Story Time
5. Not Now Jesus
6. If You’re Sure You Want To
7. The Lucky Ones (feat. Danalogue)
8. Why Buzzardman Why
9. Not My Ask
11. I Hope
Album of the week 10-14 February
Seu Jorge & Rogê – Seu Jorge & Rogê Night Dreamer Direct-To-Disc Sessions [Night Dreamer] Our album of the week is Seu Jorge and Rogê Night Dreamer Direct-To-Disc Sessions out on Night Dreamer on the 7th of February. This is the first time the duo have recorded an album together, consummating 25 years of friendship…
Seu Jorge & Rogê – Seu Jorge & Rogê Night Dreamer Direct-To-Disc Sessions [Night Dreamer]
Our album of the week is Seu Jorge and Rogê Night Dreamer Direct-To-Disc Sessions out on Night Dreamer on the 7th of February.
This is the first time the duo have recorded an album together, consummating 25 years of friendship and brotherhood that started back in Rio De Janeirio in the 1990s. Jorge & Rogê both sing and play guitar alongside two exceptional percussionists, Peu Meurray and Pretinho da Serrinha. Seu Jorge and Rogê’s graceful, stirring songwriting mirrors the quality and strength of their friendship, and evokes the legends of Brazilian music before them, such as Milton Nascimento, Gilberto Gil and Jorge Ben.
The technique used at the recording in the Artone Studios, in Haarlem, outside Amsterdam gave the Brazilians a chance to express themselves in a way that especially frames this event: the one-take method of direct-to-disc recording eschews the interference of any post-production process (such as overdubbing or multitracking) allowing them to show that trust and gifted musicianship is as paramount as skill and discipline when recording this way. A celebration of bonding, connectivity and ability, is embellished in one single take.
Breaking into the international limelight with an acting role in Wes Anderson’s A Life Aquatic, Seu Jorge captivated audiences; strumming plaintive, Portuguese-language covers of David Bowie classics. With the release of the film’s soundtrack, major label deals and album releases for dedicated Brazilian music imprints such as Mr Bongo and Now-Again, Seu Jorge made an indelible mark on the musical map and is oft-cited for revitalising Brazilian popular music across the globe.
From his beginnings in the favelas of Belford-Roxo, Rio de Janeiro, Seu Jorge’s musical journey started in his late teens; he taught himself guitar for three years before being hired, in 1993, as an actor and musician with Tuerj, a theatrical troupe sponsored by the Universidade do Estado do Rio de Janeiro. This led him to front the major label-signed Farofa Carioca and spearheading the modern samba revival.
Throughout all of this, Seu Jorge kept a close friendship with Rogê. A songwriter, composer and musician in his own right, carioca singer Rogê has received a prestigious Latin Grammy nomination and collaborated with samba legend, Arlindo Cruz. With seven albums to his name, Rogê is also considered to be a principal part of the Brazilian popular music scene revival (MPB), along with his friend, Seu Jorge. They have both performed together several times, notably at Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro for the 2000 New Year’s Eve celebration, and his group 4 Cabeça have won the illustrious Brazilian Music Award’ in the ‘Best MPB Group’ category.
Over the years, they have built an archive of unrealised songs, sketches and ideas, some of which lay the foundations of this session: the song Caminhão was conceived by the pair in a Rio bar, some 25 years ago. The album is deeply symbolic of their bond and of their roots, reflected especially in the intimate Pra Você Amigo which translates simply and poignantly as For You, Friend. Their vocal exchange on A Força or The Force references the Afro-Brazilian religious tradition of Candomblé (a belief that “does not include the duality of a concept of good opposed to evil”, rather a realisation of destiny is the path towards spiritual fulfillment) which focuses on music and dance during ceremony. This again serves as a metaphor for their connection; a deep and spiritual kinship.
This is an album with its roots firmly in the heart of Rio de Janeiro; the city where they have spent most of their lives. It’s been part of their connection, working on material together throughout the stages of their careers. They share an ambition “to create a classic Brazilian record” and through this simple and unrefined recording, their aspiration has been realised.
2. A Força
3. Meu Brasil
4. Pra Você, Amigo
6. Vem Me Salvar
7. Onda Carioca
Album of the Week: 3-7 February
Vula Viel – What’s Not Enough About That [Vula Viel Records] Our album of the week is Vula Viel‘s ‘What’s Not Enough About That’, out on Vula Viel Records on the 7th of February, 2020. Following the acclaimed release of ‘Do Not Be Afraid’ and a busy tour that took them from UK to Europe…
Vula Viel – What’s Not Enough About That [Vula Viel Records]
Following the acclaimed release of ‘Do Not Be Afraid’ and a busy tour that took them from UK to Europe and back, including a stellar performance at Womad captured by BBC Radio 3, Vula Viel return with a new album.
The band continue their sonic explorations around the gyil, the wooden xylophone of the Dagaare from Upper West Ghana, on their brand new set, ‘What’s Not Enough About That’.
Picking up from early 2019’s ‘Do Not Be Afraid’, the new album breaks new ground as Bex Burch (gyil), Ruth Goller (bass) and Jim Hart (drums) continue to forge their own unique fusions. While ‘Do Not Be Afraid’ developed ideas around disciplined ‘rhythm wheels’, rhythm patterns in regular cycles set to the band’s angular instrumentation, the new tracks stretch out the band’s sound, at times delicate and at others moving into raw post punk soundscapes.
Extensive touring brought the band from London’s most revered alternative venues such as Café Oto and Vortex Jazz Club to the stages of Cheltenham Jazz Festival and WOMAD, the British countryside plus our mainland European dates including Moers Festival, Bezau Beatz, Willisau Jazz Festival and Artist in Focus at Music Meeting, to take the Vula Viel sound to Germany, Austria, France, Switzerland and the Netherlands in Europe for a string of packed jazz festivals – a busy year that cemented the unity of the trio and nurtured their artistic growth.
“My journey with the gyil has always been rooted in the Dagaare traditions”, explains Burch, “but through playing live and developing a tight chemistry together, the band is constantly pushing its own boundaries and finding its own new directions. On this album, I wanted to bring more space into our music and echo feelings and emotions through the ebb and flow of the tracks – reflection, hope, urgency, determination, anger.”
The result is an expansive, spacious album which winds effortlessly from the reassuring pulse of ‘My Own Skin’ through to the gently soaring, textured ‘Bird In Kumasi’ and strident closer ‘Six Days In One’. Lyrically, the messages celebrate mindfulness and our uniqueness as people: “Even not fitting in, I am comfortable in my own skin” on the affirming opening track, while guest vocalist, New York experimental music great Peter Zummo (Arthur Russell, Mitra Sumara) laconically urges us on the title track that life and love is enough to give us genuine happiness; on ‘Forget And Forgive’, Ghanaian palm-wine legend Koo Nimo urges us to reflect, forget and forgive after arguments.
‘What’s Not Enough About That’ marks another major step in the evolution of Vula Viel. The album is released on all formats on 7th February 2020 featuring photography by Alexis Maryon. The album was recorded at London’s Fish Factory and was mixed by Dilip Harris (Sons Of Kemet, Joe Armon-Jones).
Vula Viel are touring from March 2020 and will perform a special gig at London’s Cafe OTO March 12th.
1 My Own Skin
2 Bird In Kumasi
5 What’s Not Enough About That
6 Forget And Forgive
7 More Is More
8 Six Days In One
Worldwide Awards 2020 – The Winners
It is done! The Worldwide Awards 2020 has come to an end. For this year only, whilst London’s KOKO recovered from a rather hectic start to the new year, the Worldwide Awards became a five-day radio extravaganza hosted by Gilles Peterson and broadcast live from the Brownswood Basement. The switch from live-gig format resulted in…
It is done! The Worldwide Awards 2020 has come to an end. For this year only, whilst London’s KOKO recovered from a rather hectic start to the new year, the Worldwide Awards became a five-day radio extravaganza hosted by Gilles Peterson and broadcast live from the Brownswood Basement. The switch from live-gig format resulted in fifteen hours of top-notch radio with live sessions, interviews, guest mixes, award-giving and great chat, all available to listen back to here.
Day One: Track of the Year
Sampa The Great – ‘Final Form’
Zambia-born, Botswana-raised and Australia-based singer-songwriter’s most recent black power anthem, ‘Final Form’ (released on the 5th June 2019 alongside a music video) draws inspiration from her and producer/longtime collaborator Silentjay’s shared love for old school hip-hop. UK Jazz heads will remember Sampa from her collaboration with Steam Down, resulting in the track ‘Summer’ and festival appearances.
Sampa performed a live session with a nine-piece band (notable members include vocalist Naima Adams (Steam Down) and trombonist Nathaniel Cross (Zara MacFarlane, Theon Cross)) who would have raised the roof had we not been in a basement. Listen back to the show or watch the video below. here. Her session was complete with blaring horns, a gorgeous guest-vocal from Boadi and stellar musicianship all-round, Great by name and nature.
Having surpassed the likes of Charlotte Dos Santos, Swindle and Likwid Continual Space Motion (LCSM) in the public vote to win her prize, its safe to say that we can expect Sampa, who begins the year with a world tour, to flourish in 2020.
Day Two: Jazz Album of the Year
Ezra Collective – You Can’t Steal My Joy
Ezra Collective are often credited with playing an integral role in London’s jazz renaissance. Their combination of Afrobeat, dub, reggae and hip-hop beats have shared a sound that represents London’s youth at large – in a way which helped stimulate engagement in a scene previously confined to jazz clubs and conservatoires.
And so, their second album You Can’t Steal My Joy won Jazz Album of the Year. Ezra Collective had some stiff competition in the form of (their very own keyboardist) Joe Armon-Jones’ Turn To Clear View and Ashley Henry’s Beautiful Vinyl Hunter. Ashley Henry gave a fantastic session during the show with his trio.
After a light-shedding interview with Gilles Peterson focusing on Ezra Collective’s effect on the jazz scene, the new bands coming up behind them and the flourishing London jazz community, Ezra Collectives’ drummer Femi Koleoso gave a guest-mix on the theme of inspirations for You Can’t Steal My Joy. Listen to the whole show here.
Day Two: Session of the Year
The Midnight Hour
Day two also saw the presentation of Session of the Year to The Midnight Hour. The collaborative project of Adrian Younge and Ali Shaheed-Muhammad appeared on one of Gilles Peterson’s almost weekly curated sessions (which take place across the Brownswood Basement, Worldwide FM and the BBC) and came out on top as his favourite of 2019.
The session presented perfectly their refined combination of hip-hop and soul grooves, somnambulant string arrangements and nostalgic vibes which nod to Harlem of the 80s and 90s.
Day Three: John Peel Play More Jazz Award
Thomas De Pourquery
The prestigious John Peel “Play More Jazz” award is named in honour of the late DJ, radio presenter and record producer. Peel was one of the original pioneers of dub, electronic and dance music on British airways, paving the way for progressive DJs like Gilles Peterson. This year’s recipient, French jazz musician Thomas De Pourquery (sometimes credited under the pseudonym Von Pourquery), brought his boundless energy, colourful dress sense, well-groomed beard and intensely imaginative music to the Brownswood Basement (playing keys, saxophone and singing with the aid of a loop station and a kick-ass band) before an in-depth interview with Gilles Peterson, discussing his broad pool of musical influences and highly personal reaction to music.
Day Three: Album Of The Year
The Comet Is Coming – Trust In The Lifeforce of the Deep Mystery
Also on day three, the coveted Album of the Year (not to be confused with jazz album of the year) was awarded to The Comet Is Coming for their intriguingly-named album Trust In The Lifeforce of the Deep Mystery. Perhaps the most hotly contested award: the shortlist for Album of the Year also included Michael Kiwanuka, Little Simz, Anderson.Paak and Flying Lotus.
This forty-five minute disc of glitchy, groove-based musical exploration showcases the experimental vibe of Shabaka Hutchings, Danalogue and BetaMax’s collaborative project. The album is described by the band as “the overcoming of fear; the embracing of chaos” and contains featured performances from (award-winning and seemingly omnipresent) poet Kate Tempest.
Much like the aforementioned Ezra Collective, The Comet Is Coming have been responsible for bringing their danceable jazz to diverse audiences, with this year’s tour schedule spanning eastern and western Europe, Scandinavia, Coachella Festival (US) and Larmer Tree Festival (UK). Listen to Day Three in full here.
Day Four: Label of the Year
This Chicago-born record company is home to Jeff Parker, Junius Paul, Ben LaMar Gay, Angel Bat Dawid, Emma-Jean Thackray, Damon Locks, Makaya McCraven, most recently Alabaster DePlume and many more big players in the spiritual, experimental and progressive jazz movements.
This special show recorded at the Co-Prosperity Sphere in Chicago (a welcome rest for the Brownswood Basement crew) boasted visceral performances from Angel Bat Dawid and Tha Brotherhood, Makaya McCraven with Junius Paul, Jaimie Branch, Resavoir and Damon Locks/Black Monument Ensemble. Gilles Peterson expressed his excitement for the movement International Anthem is spearheading, likening its influence to Blue Note during the 1960s. Listen to the full show here.
Day Five: Breakthrough Artist of the Year
Also reaching second place in the Track of the Year vote with ‘Mr. Sun (miss da sun)’, Greentea Peng was awarded Breakthrough Artist of the Year on the final day of the Worldwide Awards 2020. Last year we saw the release of Greentea Peng’s second EP, Rising on Different Recordings/TENNNN – a consolidation of her effortless, offhand vocal style and refreshingly spacious, hip-hoppy production.
Considering Greentea Peng burst on to the scene just recently (her first releases date back to 2018) her musical direction is remarkably clear and coherent.
Greentea Peng delivered a live session in the Brownswood Basement with a six-piece band, a rare opportunity to hear her with (mostly) acoustic backing.
Lifetime Achievement Award
Jean-Paul ‘Bluey’ Maunick
Jean-Paul ‘Bluey’ Maunick is the driving force behind Incognito, a funk, latin and jazz-influenced outfit hi-jacking airwaves and concert venues since ’79. Existing for a short time alongside sister band Light Of The World, Incognito has gone through countless line-up changes but has always retained a big-band feel, as Bluey discussed with Gilles Peterson on receiving his reward.
Even in the relatively stripped-back band Bluey brought to play in the Brownswood Basement, the usual piano, guitar, bass and drums combo was joined by percussion, sax and flute. Bluey (playing guitar and singing) and his band gave a blistering session including a variety of tunes from his hefty back catalogue, including ‘Sunburn’.
All of the Worldwide Awards shows are available to listen to through the WWFM website.
Party people, fear not! the Worldwide Awards will be back in its usual live-gig format at KOKO next year.
Album of the Week 27-31 January
Islandman – Kaybola [Music For Dreams] Our album of the week is Islandman‘s ‘Kaybola’ that will be out on Music For Dreams on the 31st of January, 2020. Turkish trio Islandman have been busy of late with festival and club gigs around the globe. Now they are setting off on a cross cultural sound journey…
Turkish trio Islandman have been busy of late with festival and club gigs around the globe. Now they are setting off on a cross cultural sound journey with their second album “Kaybola” (which means to get lost to find a new way in Turkish).
The record is chock full of ethno-cultural material from Japan to Bulgaria, including field recordings of Tuva, Central Asia throat singers. Shamanic rhythms were introduced to nomadic guitars, combining with compact electronic structures, finally transforming jazz elements into dance movements of a tribe that no one knew and emerged as ‘KAYBOLA’.
The album has been 2 years in the making and the result will no doubt gain a whole new fanbase. An intoxicating mix of experimental electronics punctuated by distinctly Turkish instrumentation.
The album features the single ‘Lamani’ a hypnotically psychedelic hip-swiveler of a track.
It also features their latest single ‘Dimitro’ which is their superb re-work of a traditional Bulgarian wedding song using 808 drum machine & bass to work it into a slow-mo dance track whilst retaining the raw vocals and ritualistic feeling.
Tolga found the original record whilst digging in a world music record store in Istanbul and immediately fell in love with the vocals.
Other highlights on the record include sunset, chill fave ‘Khepre’, the dancefloor chugger ‘Shu’ & the superbly catchy trumpet banger ‘Sahara’ Pink Floyd vibes on the hippie synth based ‘Hold Your Breath’.
This special edition double vinyl release includes 5 tracks that are not on the digital album each with their own unique style and includes collaborations with Ibiza legend DJ Pippi on Sem Voce and the jazz journey of Lumiere, produced in Denmark with label mates The Swan & The Lake & Langkilde.
Altogether a wonderful new album by islandman who has taken another musical leap forward from his critically acclaimed debut album ‘Rest in Space’.
A4. Hold Your Breath
B2. Lumiere Et Penombre feat. The Swan & The Lake & Langkilde
B3. Marakesh B4. Jambo Maro
C1. Sem Voce feat. Copenema & DJ Pippi
D2. Island Dub
D3. Rama feat. Troels Hammer, Langkilde & Perfect Plush
Worldwide Rotations: January
We’ve updated our regular Worldwide FM playlist with upfront and reissued music from around the world. Listen throughout the month on air, or to enjoy on the move, subscribe or follow the playlist on Spotify and Soundcloud. Aardvarck – Aap Noot [Rush Hour] Antoinette Konan – Kokoloko Tani [Awesome Tapes From Africa] B-ahwe – Closer (Breaka…
We’ve updated our regular Worldwide FM playlist with upfront and reissued music from around the world. Listen throughout the month on air, or to enjoy on the move, subscribe or follow the playlist on Spotify and Soundcloud.
Aardvarck – Aap Noot [Rush Hour]
Antoinette Konan – Kokoloko Tani [Awesome Tapes From Africa]
B-ahwe – Closer (Breaka Remix) [Unknown]
Bobby Hutcherson – Montara (Madlib Remix) [Blue Note]
Chassol – Rollercoaster (Part 1) [Tricatel]
D.Y.A & Kalyma – Operator II [Solide]
Destroyer – Cue Synthesizer [Merge Records]
Dijf Sanders – Ravana [Unday Records]
DiTi – silence1 [White]
Eyedress – Trauma [Lex Records]
Fifth Of Heaven – Just a Little More [Mix Out Records]
Flamingo Pier – Tripping Up [Soundway Records]
Gnome Beats – Ai Kansha (feat. Kokoro Star) [Dome of Doom]
Greentea Peng – Sane [Different Recordings]
Haich Ber Na – Forgetful [Self Release]
Haleek Maul – Halo (feat. Mick Jenkins) [Lex Records]
James Reese & the Progressions – Let’s Go (It’s Summertime) [Now-Again Records]
Jeff Parker – Go Away [International Anthem]
Kadiata – One Last Time [Unknown]
LaRhonda LeGette – Now You Sit Alone [The Numero Group]
Lyra Pramuk – Tendril [Bedroom Collection]
Majid Bekkas – Hassania [ACT Music]
Mal Waldron – 1-3-234 [ECM Records]
Matana Roberts – Shoes of Gold [Constellation]
Maxime Alexander feat. $hakes – BSA Freestyle #1 [Monologues Records]
Mick Jenkins – Carefree [Free Nation]
Moses Sumney – Me in 20 Years [Jagjaguwar]
Nardeyday – Slippin [Lucky Number]
Nicola Cruz – Marea [I Lost My Poncho In Istanbul]
Odron Ritual Orchestra – Alone Together [PMG Jazz]
Ola Szmidt – Rooted [Self Release]
On-Ly – What’s The Weather? [La Sape]
Pecker – Mystical Electro Harakiri [Shaklow]
Penya – Heyyeh [On The Corner]
Pepin – Galaxy Drive feat. Sauce81 [Star Creature]
Prophet – Be the One [Stones Throw]
Quinto Sol – Musica Infinita [Arc Records]
Redeyes – The Unfinished Theory [The North Quarter]
Scott Xylo – Nightfall (Ft. Kai Rabai) [Self Release]
Scruscru Feat. Jehan – Teuf De Ouf [Ravanelli Disco Club]
Seu Jorge – Pra Você, Amigo [Night Dreamer]
Show Dem Camp Ft. Burna Boy – True Story [Show Dem Records]
Sibusile Xaba – Abakhohlwanga [Komos]
Sidiku Buari – Disco Soccer [Makossa International]
Siti Muraram – Mashozi Huba [On The Corner]
Sotomayor – Quema [Wonderwheel Recordings]
Space Ghost – Groovin [Tartelet Records]
Sunda Arc – Hymn [Gondwana Records]
The Quiet Ones – Need Your Love [Humble Recs]
The Wedge – Liberation [Unknown]
Theo Parrish – This is For You [Sound Signature]
Thundercat – Black Qualls (Feat. Steve Lacy & Steve Arrington) [Brainfeeder]
Waldos Gift – Vordhosbn [Astral Tusk]
Web Web – The Upper (Part 1 & 2) [Unknown]
Wildflower – Where The Wild Things Dance [Ill Considered Music]
Wilma Archer – Last Sniff featuring MF DOOM [Domino]
Yansima – Tweede Cans [R&S Records]
Yazmin Lacey – Not Today Mate [On Your Own]
Your Old Droog – Stoop Kid (feat. Tha God Fahim) [Mongoloid Banks]
Yusuke Hirado – Early Bird [EMI]
Zoe’s Shanghai – Saint Vibe and Time [Self Release]