Monday 17 June 2024

'Wouj Vè Nwè Dialektics' by Eugene Neighbrs

Oioji Records were very clear at their inception about the importance of culture and heritage, and the impact those key characteristics would have on their music going forward.  To know where you're going, you have to know where you've been and "where you've been" has helped to form much of the label's over-arching message and focus.

Even on projects pre-Oioji, label founder As Valet consistently took the time to express his devotion to the Caribbean island of La Martinique.  A spiritual reconnection as well as a musical one with As Valet's archetypal penchant for hip-hop-inspired production having found new inspiration alongside the music and legacy of La Martinique.  The results then for his releases 'Inner Journey' and 'Canne à Sucre' make for an incredible journey that absolutely pays respects to the music and culture's lineage while also empowering As Valet to decidedly look forward to create with confidence.

Since Oioji, however, La Martinique has continued to weigh heavily over the label's releases.  Most recently, Queen Ci unveiled a fantastic project in 'Creole Lightening EP vol​.​1' which sought to pay loving homage to the life of Creole icon, Cécile Jean-Louis.  As a singer, songwriter and actress, Jean-Louis was highly regarded as a trailblazer who was revered for persevering down the untraveled road, paving the way for her culture.

The latest Oioji release, helmed by Eugene Neighbrs, still addresses home with an unwavering affection but this time the producer uses 'Wouj Vè Nwè Dialektics' to address the French Caribbean with the intention to inspire change within a socio and political context. 

The ten-track release serves as a fascinating and engaging statement of intent brought to life through a variety of different musical ideals that place listeners within the heart of La Martinique.  Neighbrs confidently navigates a fascinating musical path that fuses those traditional Caribbean styles with hip-hop production and deep house-inspired compositions.  The tribal rhythms of 'Pwofitasyon', the sublime soundscape of the As Valet-assisted 'Bèl Komba' and the moody dancefloor gem 'Wav'Em' all serve as highlights throughout a sensational release.

Once again, we remain captivated by the Oioji team - their passion, consideration and overall fantastic music continue to showcase an evolving and sensational body of music.

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