April 30, 2013
Having first hit the scene 15 years ago with ‘Night over Manaus’, Boozoo Bajou have since gone on to release three critically acclaimed albums on !K7 and Stereo Deluxe, working with the likes of legendary drummer Tony Allen and soul legend Willie Hutch and remixing Common and Tosca along the way. Stepping up for their debut release on Apollo Records, the Nuremberg duo of Peter Heider and Florian Seyberth have put together a stunning four track EP that draws on their considerable history while simultaneously moving their sound forward.
Heider’s background as a jazz musician and producer is complemented beautifully by Seyberth’s own history as a DJ and together they create music that bursts with atmosphere while maintaining a razor sharp focus. From the moody opening rattle of title track Jan Mayen, a burst of mournful desert blues, the scene is set for an EP that shines bright; both in terms of it’s absolutely immaculate production – which leaves so much of todays digital music in the shade – and also in terms of it’s incredibly rich musicality. Kodiak kicks off with an incessant pulse, offset with ride cymbals and complex jazz percussion patterns that sound half junk yard, half mad max.
The underlying pulse grows in intensity until a breakbeat kicks in half way through and pushes the track deep into funk territory. Next up is Stronsay, which comes on like a piece of mid 70s sci-fi soul that could almost be a lost track from the back catalogue of psychedelic soul superstar Shuggie Otis – yearning pads underpinning an overdriven beat to fantastic effect. Most ambient of all the tracks on display is Stufen-Spitzbergen, which marries a menacing synth bass to a funeral march beat with the result an epic, filmic piece of music that transports the listener into the richly imagined world that Boozoo Bajou inhabit.
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