Boomkat Product Review:
One of the strongest finds on Awesome Tapes From Africa kills us again with Aroo, which springs directly from his Trotro EP with the same drum pattern underlining the NRG of Aroo, whereas African Techno sounds like some stray Dance Mania jacker, Ghana Baby is a more hook-riddled quicker banger, and Monkey brings a sunny highlife flavour.
“DJ Katapila’s Aroo EP is the latest addition to the iconoclastic producer’s catalog of fast-paced, pan West African-influenced dance music. From a young age, Ishmael Abbey was a beloved local DJ in Accra, Ghana’s competitive and rapidly-evolving music galaxy.
DJ Katapila’s debut release with Awesome Tapes From Africa, 2016’s reissue of Trotro, ignited international acclaim for the Ghanaian DJ and producer: The New York Times, Pitchfork, Resident Advisor and FACT heaped praise on his work. Katapila launched a touring career beyond his grueling schedule of all-night parties around Ghana’s southern coast and neighboring countries, heading to Europe and the UK, where he performed at festivals and clubs the past two years. Katapila brought Ghana’s street party culture to audiences overseas; a wave of joy and happy dancers were left in his wake.
While traveling this past summer in Europe, he continued to work on the minimalist electronic music steeped in his hometown rhythms that has made him a growing and singular voice in West African music. Having never traveled outside his region before, the contemporary sounds of London impacted his sonic palette, triggering new song “African Techno.” He explains, “In Europe and the UK they like these techno songs and house music. They have songs that sound like African music, and we have songs that sound like house music and techno music.””