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Ililta! – New Ethiopian Dance Music


It’s got text in Amharic on the sleeve! I assume! It’s about single length! It uses exclamation marks to describe itself, and this seems awesome! Because the music is awesome!

… I remember when I first heard drum n’ bass, on Peel, sometime in the 90s. It was weird and scary and made me feel a little bit sexy when being sexy was a weird feeling but was also a little bit intimidating. This record’s a bit like that. It’s nothing like D’n’B though. It’s some great shuffly Ethiopian rhythms that make me want to travel around Africa drinking too much with amazing people who don’t seem to mind that I dance like I’m being controlled by particularly dense insects. It’s also got basslines that are straight out of the Mark E Smith book of bowel-peturbation, circa ’86.

I don’t really know where it all fits in terms of what’s going on in Africa- every now and then I’ll hear something like this that makes me think that everything is wrong with places that aren’t Africa. I’m assuming that it’s a case of people picking up whatever instruments they can find, cheap, and having an awesome party without particularly worrying whether it’s heading overseas (unlike a lot of African jazz, which seems to have a pretty international reach).

So… yeah, the vocals sound faintly reminiscent of some stuff I’ve heard. Chanty back-and-forthings. It’s not massive dense rhythmically – relatively simple (at least by comparison to Nyabhingi or something) but utterly on the dancefloor. But yeah. Yeah! Proper night on the tiles stuff.

Words fail me. Just buy the shit out of this single with your monies. Do it now. And dance with your partner of choice or in solitary formation if you’re bashful. Yeah? Yeah!

-Kev Nickells-


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