Dj and production duo Ancient Astronauts released their latest single, ‘Tebamanyi feat. MoRoots’ on the 6th of November. The single is taken from their groundbreaking Afro-European album ZIK ZAK, which will be released on the 22nd of January 2021 via Switchstance Recordings and features a variety of rising African musicians. The album was preceded by the noteworthy Kampala Fire EP.
Ancient Astronauts began the well-known label Switchstance Recordings and have collaborated with the likes of Thievery Corporation, Akua Naru, The Pharcyde and DJ Brace. The pair have made quite a name for themselves on stage, having performed at Lollapalooza Festival, toured the USA with Thievery Corporation, and appeared at the SXSW Festival (2011). The pair currently sit at over 21 million plays across streaming platforms, with features on the Atmospheric Calm Spotify playlist, and have received airplay from DJ Pathaan on the BBC Asian Network and a review from BBC Music to boot. Ugandan born and London based MoRoots is a fast-rising singer, songwriter, composer, saxophonist, classical pianist who is currently making waves across both continents. The songstress has been supported by several publications including Bella Naija, New Vision, The New Times, Chimp Reports, The Observer and Sofar Sounds.
Ancient Astronauts is comprised of Kabanjak (aka Ingo Möll who is born and based in Duisburg, Germany) and Dogu (aka Tom Strauch who is from Moers and currently based in Cologne, Germany). Dogu performed at the very first Nyege Nyege Festival in Jinja, Uganda in 2015 which has since gone on to become widely acclaimed. The pair find inspiration in a variety of styles, including the likes of Madlib, Apollo Brown, Clutchy Hopkins, RJD2, King Tubby, Lee Perry, Dubmatix, Stone Love, J Dilla, Augustus Pablo, Midnite, DJ Premiere, Pete Rock and 9th Wonder. However, ‘Tebamanyi feat. MoRoots’ sits closer to the likes of the production stylings of Thievery Corporation, Kruder & Dorfmeister, the haunting string work of Portishead and Quakers the while the vocals call to mind the powerful likes of Amy Winehouse and Mary J. Blige.
Radiating with strong feminism and bold vocals, ‘Tebamanyi feat. MoRoots’ is made with deep grooves that keep the listener entranced. An “in-your-face, I-don’t-care” attitude opens the single. However, instead of allowing this rhythm to dominate the single, there is a deep sense of refinement and precision within the vocals that is only further accentuated by the production stylings of Ancient Astronauts.
Ancient Astronauts tell us a little about the joys of working with MoRoots, “She has such an amazing voice and her lyrics are just pure honesty, nothing played or acted. She is just being herself. None of that fake artist character created for the world of Instagram and such, she is pure artistry and a phenomenal voice in one person.”
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