Review: Ibeyi ‘Ibeyi’




To me it seems that more of the UK is slowly starting to appreciate more music of different corners of the world, like my last review of Romare, the growing influences of different cultures and music is growing very fast. It’s like a few years ago me and my good friend where talking about how Afro-beat and African music is going to become very big in the club scene, and it is getting there!

Back on track Ibeyi the Cuban/French duo released their debut ‘Ibeyi’ on XL (I don’t need to explain XL anymore, they’re a powerhouse of releasing amazing music) back in February and its not been off my record player since (with the slight exception of Romare, and a few others) It has production help from Richard Russell too.

‘Ibeyi’ starts with the intro ‘Eleggua’ and takes you straight to there native home to easy you into the record I guess. ‘Oya’ then starts carrying on this lovely harmonies and synths or organs (organ synths) only to become louder and then drop into this wooden percussion. It really starts the record of and there’s just so many amazing influence’s coming though. ‘Ghosts’ carries on this brilliant percussions, and adds pianos and mixture of different vocals, which sound like you’re in a Cuban/Latin dance hall or something like that. ‘River’ is repetitive track full of more Latin percussion and mix vocals. ‘Think of You’ a lot more darker than the last tracks, it carries this haunting piano and much more aggressive percussion. ‘Behind the Curtain’ takes things on a more chilled out direction. ‘Stranger/Lover’ starts of almost like a hip hop track, laid with more fantastic percussion, piano and strings. Its chorus is brilliant, which you’ll be singing for days to come. ‘Mama Says’ starts with hypnotic clicks and very sad lyrics, its another dark emotional turn on the album. The album carries on this amazing path brilliant production and influences, until the penultimate track ‘Singles’ which gets very RnB-ish, then album ends with the outro ‘Ibeyi’


For me this record is amazing, that could be because i’m slightly biased on XL’s output or because of Latin music. But ‘Ibeyi’ just has this amazing influences from their natives lands, that EVERYONE should listen to, its really takes you away with amazing heart warming tracks, to slow more darker ones. But it comes together so well. I mean the production is so on point and the arrangements are too, and it leaves you wanting to find more Latin music!

Key Tracks: ‘Think Of You’ ‘Stranger/Lover’ ‘Mama Says’ and ‘Singles’



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