WaqWaq Kingdom consists of Japanese musicians Shigeru Ishihara of DJ Scotch Egg / Seefeel fame and Kiki Hitomi (ex-King Midas Sound) and they make something they like to call 'minyo footwork'. To the layman this means adventures in sound that combines such disparate things as afro-beat, contemporary electronica, techno and Jamaican dancehall. The result is a wildly creative, intoxicating brew of sound.
Vinyl LP £19.49 PHNTM9LPB
Blue coloured vinyl repress LP on Phantom Limb.
- Coloured vinyl
This is one of those, ‘just two people having a lot fun’ records huh? ‘Essaka Hoisa’ comes from WaqWaq Kingdom, a collaboration between producer Shigeru Ishihara, and vocalist Kiki Hitomi. I suppose for Hitomi, the project must have come as something for a release after all the dour dread she conjured alongside King Midas Sound in her previous gig.
No dourness here, just upbeat polyrhythms and chopped and screwed bucking vocals. It’s quite a ride. So much so that the best point of comparison is the recent output of that Nyege Nyege Tapes, the current kings of releasing music that is quite a ride.
The drum sounds are fast and messy, conjuring images of a huge mass of drummers in (no quite) perfect synchronisation. The drums ‘Circle of Life’ are enormous, the perfect backing to majesty of nature implied by the birdcalls that are all over it.
Hitomi’s lyrics are the perfect foil to these drums. She darts and weaves around the beats with all the dexterity of a dancehall MC. I’d love to hear her share vocal duties with Equiknoxx’s Shanique Marie. On ‘Itakadimasu’ she’s the idea guide through Ishihara’s completely lethal and disorienting rhythms.
So actually, that should be three people having fun. Hitomi, Ishihara, and uh, me.
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