Half-Mauritian singer-percussionist Mo Kolours steps forward with his debut release, EP1: Drum Talking. This beguiling, otherworldly record sees him drawing heavily on the ‘sega’ music of his ancestral island homeland and uniting it with dub, soul and various electronic styles to create intriguing new combinations.
Sequenced as a continuous, free-flowing piece of music, the EP is already picking up early props from the likes of Radio 1 music enthusiast and tastemaker Gilles Peterson and Hot Chip lynchpin Joe Goddard.
Influences and reference points for this hypnotic debut offering range from Theo Parrish to Bill Withers, Tony Allen to King Tubby, Jimi Hendrix to Gonjasufi, and beyond.
Opener Bakiraq is rich with vocal incantations, loose fragments of which Mo draws together into an intoxicating whole. Drum Talking and Biddies draw to the fore the heavily rhythmic styles found in the African influenced slave songs of Mauritian sega music; the former a polyrhythmic percussion workout, the latter a house-not-house jam propelled by handclaps and Mo’s manipulated vocal loops. Dead Of Night then mines The Beatles’ Blackbird, but its woozy aesthetic is more a half-remembered dream than a conventional cover of the chirpy original. The raw hip-hop drums and rubbery vocal bassline of 8 Hours end the EP with a bang, before Biddies makes a deserved encore, re-edited for adventurous dancefloors by Vancouver’s Truth Is Light crew, whose limited 12” edits of obscure tracks are winning them cult status.
EP1: Drum Talking is the first installment in a trilogy of Mo Kolours EPs. All three will come via One-Handed Music, the increasingly renowned label behind releases from Bullion, Paul White and others, which was nominated as a Label Of The Year at the 2011 Radio 1 Worldwide Awards alongside Hot Flush and Warp Records. Mo Kolours recently made his first ever live appearance at the Boiler Room night, swapping percussion, keyboards and electronics with label-mate Paul White. Stay tuned for further Mo Kolours and Paul White live adventures.