Genre: Folk / Avant-garde / Indie Electronic
As multi-instrumentalists, the two artists translate messages from their ancestors through rhythms and grooves. Their vocals heighten the trance into rhythmic patterns that bring us melodies of both past and future.
Charismatic guitar savant Sibusile Xaba reframes maskandi and the avant-garde into his own humanist manifesto. With a vocal style that is part dreamscaping and part ancestral invocation, Xaba divines as opposed to plainly singing. Combined with a guitar style that is rooted in expressive picking, Xaba’s music shatters the confines of genre, taking only the fundamentals from mentors such as Madala Kunene and Dr Philip Tabane and imbuing these with a mythology and improvisational intensity all of his own.
Esinam Dogbatse is a Belgian-Ghanaian multi-instrumentalist based in Brussels. With her artist moniker ESINAM, she creates a musical world of her own, filled with rhythms, grooves, melodies and loops. Solely carried away by sound, ESINAM succeeds in blending her soulful voice with traditional African percussion, adding here and there some electronic influences combined with sensitive melodies and flute improvisations. Her compositions carry traces from numerous geographical, cultural and musical influences, which she collected from her personal history and through various travels, encounters, tours and collaborations.
ESINAM discovered Sibusile Xaba during his European (solo)tour in 2018. She was enchanted by his musical energy and craftsmanship and invited him as a vocal guest feature on the track ‘Flowing River’, from her debut album ‘Shapes in Twilights of infinity’. When she was asked at the first edition of WOMAD Festival in South Africa if she wanted to collaborate with a ‘local artist’, she didn’t have to think twice.
In October 2022, Esinam and Sibusile seized this opportunity to dive into the rehearsal and recording studio, and discover and combine each other’s musical universes to shape up new music together. Both artists wish to elaborate on these musical seeds that were planted and we hope to harvest together with them the fruits of an intense musical collaboration after a residency in the venue Le Botanique in Brussels.
Sibusile and ESINAM will be supported by Berlin-based artistic performer, singer-rapper, actress, dancer and event curator Astan KA. French-Malian, she considered herself as a child of reconciliation. Her music is mostly experimental as she explores various genres such as jazz, rap, trip-hop or ethno/afro electronic sounds. She develops a musical universe that she names „gangsta jazz“. Astan is the lead singer of the band Asphalt Djelis and a member of the Berlin based music collective Sonic Interventions. She is the co-founder of Cult’Sup‘, a cultural event focusing on afro-hybrid artistic content and ancestral knowledges.