Ibibio Sound Machine - Electricity
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Electricity is the fourth and most progressive album from Ibibio Sound Machine, and like all good Afrofuturist stories, it begins with an existential crisis. "It's darker than anything we've done previously", says Eno Williams, the group's singer. "That's because it grew out of the turbulence of the past year. It inhabits an edgier world".
Electricity was produced by the Grammy Award and Mercury Prize nominated British synthpop group Hot Chip, a collaboration born out of mutual admiration watching each other on festival stages, as well as a shared love of Francis Bebey and Giorgio Moroder. The fruits of their labor reveal a gleaming, supercharged, Afrofuturist blinder. Along the way, the team conjured a kaleidoscope of delights that include resonances of Jonzun Crew, Grace Jones, William Onyeabor, Tom Tom Club, Kae Tempest, Keith LeBlanc, The J.B.'s, Jon Hassell's "Fourth World", and Bootsy Collins.
Electricity is a deep and seamless realization of Williams' and saxophonist Max Grunhard's ambitious founding manifesto to combine the singularly rhythmic character of the Ibibio language - which Williams spoke growing up in Nigeria - with a range of traditional West African music and more modern electronic sounds. Highlights include "All That You Want", "Protection From Evil" and "17 18 19".
Heavyweight vinyl produced by Merge Records in 2022.