Breaka - Breaka 005

  • Restless producer Breaka sets his eyes on South Africa for an amapiano-leaning EP that features Kamohelo from Off The Meds.
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  • We Move, Charlie Baker's debut album from earlier this year, was a kaleidoscope of global dance music sounds from kuduro to samba. His follow-up, the fifth 12-inch in his self-titled series, continues this adventurous trajectory, this time focusing on South African amapiano and blending it with his bass-heavy signature. For someone who has made a career in the heavier ends of dance music, it's a surprise that Baker hasn't worked with an MC before. But this collaboration with Kamohelo Khoaripe (of Off The Meds fame) was worth the wait. The two are like sugar and spice on "Dololo," where Baker's stabs slide underneath the typically tongue-in-cheek lyrics of Khoaripe, who riffs on a South African slang word meaning "nothing." "Feelings? Dololo. Heart? Dololo. Commitment? Dololo. Support? Dololo." If "Dololo" is a clear homage to amapiano, then the other track, "Ama Waltz (U Make Me High)," takes the genre apart. Corralling breakbeats into a 3/4 rhythm (the "waltz" in the title is a giveaway), the song takes amapiano's signature levity and fuses it with a UK techno-style melody, with a gated synth ricocheting across the stereo spectrum. As the song progresses, Baker moves into Kevin Momo territory with jazzy piano keys and a vocal as rich as red velvet cake. Borrowing so heavily from a genre forged in the South African townships, Breaka 005 falls on the right side of appreciation, rather than appropriation. Baker shows reverence for the genre in its current form, while also thinking about what exactly he can add as the sound goes planetary.
  • Tracklist
      01. Dololo feat. Kamohelo 02. Ama Waltz (U Make Me High) 03. Dololo (Instrumental)