Boomkat Product Review:
Nyege Nyege Tapes boss Arlen Dilsizian aka Moroto Hvy Indstr supplies a jaw-dropping mix of field recordings made in Sub Saharan Africa between 1949-1977 on NPLGNN’s cherry-picking MBE Series, astutely highlighting parallels between little-heard African musics and ancient art and their echoes in the European avant-garde over the same period.
Truly a music nerd’s wet dream, MBE 004 comprises field recordings recorded between 1949 and 1977 in Sub Saharan Africa and compiled by Moroto Hvy Indstr, whose influential and world-class label Nyege Nyege Tapes has practically revolutionised perceptions of modern African music - particularly from East, central and South Africa - to a global audience over the past half decade. The tape gives some vital background to the selector and label’s interests in African music, combining his studies and trade as Anthropologist-cum-label owner with his passion for beguiling and radical music to present a thrilling, educational mix that arguably proves the Western music world’s shocking and perhaps unpardonable lack of knowledge of these prescient and naturally radical works, and that sprawling part of the world in general.
Racking up 40 tracks from (deep breath) - Congo DRC/ Congo Brazzaville/ Nigeria/ Niger/ Ethiopia/ Gabon/ Cameroon/ Malawi/ Namibia/ Tanzania/ Central African Republic/ Togo/ Guinea/ Ivory Coast/ Rwanda/ Liberia/ Angola/ Madagascar/ Togo/ Sudan/ Ghana / South Africa and Uganda - your man lets most tracks play out in their entirety, with only dabs of reverb and echo in transitions, and most crucially never looping it up - acutely highlighting how these styles do repetition that’s always different but ever the same in a way that’s become a holy grail for so, so much European avant garde and experimental electronic music, but which doesn’t acknowledge it nearly enough.
In Moroto Hvy Indstr’s own words “This mix tries to explore similar territory from a different angle. I have tried to select field recordings that puts 'traditional' or 'classical' music from Sub Saharan Africa in direct conversation with modern avant-garde compositions of the same era, especially 1950's - 1970's electronic compositions, anything from Jocy De Oliveira, John Cage, Gruppo D'Improvvisazione Nuova Consonanza, Steve Reich etc.” and we can only affirm he does it incredibly well.
Do not sleep on this!!!