London-based duo Ibibio Sound Machine make dazzling disco dance tracks that infuse the polyrhythm and pizzicato guitar of Africa to make a genre-bending experience. The band is made up of Nigerian singer Eno Williams and Ghanaian guitarist Alfred “Kari” Bannerman, who are releasing their sophomore record Doko Mien on March 22 via Merge. Today, they’ve shared the album’s lead single and quasi-title track, “Tell Me (Doko Mien.” On the track, Williams sings in both English and Ibibio — the Nigerian language from which her band’s name is derived — in gorgeously breezy perfection over a funky percussion line, horns, and synths that would fit just as well in Studio 54 as it would on an LCD Soundsystem record.
“Music is a universal language, but spoken language can help you think about what makes you emotional, what makes you feel certain feelings, what you want to see in the world,” says Williams.
Ibibio Sound Machine will be participating in this year’s International Clash Day London broadcast, taking place February 4-7th. In celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Clash’s landmark album London Calling, KEXP will travel to London for a 4-day live broadcast and online event, featuring live performances and exclusive interviews. The band will take the Studio 9294 stage alongside fellow British bands IDLES, Chemtrails, Heavy Lungs, and more. Performance schedule and additional artists to be announced soon.
Listen to “Tell Me (Doko Mien)” below.
KEXP will travel to London for the 7th Annual International Clash Day, with a full week of live performances celebrating The Clash, the 40th Anniversary of the release of London Calling, and the strength of London’s music scene.