☰ Move! ☰
Kwaito may be a new discovery to some, but in South Africa, it’s anything but an “underground” sound; It was street soul made from synthesizers and rhythm machines, formed in the Johannesburg township of Soweto. Batuk, 2018 EP Move! pays homage to the kwaito beat they grew up with and the roots that shaped them.
Batuk is led by rapper/songstress Manteiga and genius producer Spoek Mathambo. Grateful and proud of the township culture they grew up with, Manteiga and Spoek’s new Move! EP is about proudly representing a range of vibrant South African township sounds.
Their track, “Move!” says and does exactly what it promises in its namesake; reintroducing us to what “Kasi Royalty” looks and sounds like.
‘Move’ manages to mash the best of 90s EDM and kwaito into a modern dancefloor club bop. Beautifully pan-African in the way Manteiga seamlessly switches between an English and Portuguese flow while Spoek reminds us why local hip hop has finally found its way.
“Move” is an oxymoron in that it’s nostalgic and futuristic at the same time. Nothing unexpected with Spoek Mathambo on the boards. Manteiga dominates the song with her personality on two verses and the hook, while Spoek appears on one verse with his swaggering delivery.
The duo are fluid and conscious in their creations, with Spoek as Mzansi’s Future-Sound pioneer and Carla as a Mozambique-Reiger Park influenced performance potentate; both with Pan African passions.
As illustrated by the dancers on the video, “Move” is perfect for private listening in your living room, the kitchen, the beach, and pretty much anywhere there’s enough space for your gyrations.
Kwaito’s foundation sound still holds the power to make today’s dancefloors shake, bleeding into modern tracks as new generations rediscover its roots.
RIYL: Jain, Missy Elliott