Much like the oft-bewildering vagaries of modern life in the metropolis from which the trio hail, London’s Benin City are a mixture of gloss and grit. Their fresh fusion of percussive electro and sparse soul is captured on new single ‘Wha Gwan’, a regretful lament of friendship gone sour, which finds Joshua Idehen’s rapid urban patter flowering into song over the expansive chorus – “We used to start/Fires in the park, you and I” – while, underneath, Theo Buckingham’s fluid rhythms embellish a metronomic pulse that anchors some weighty synth chords. As the track builds, Tom Leaper’s horn riff creeps in almost unnoticed, until its sombre melody becomes the focal point of the coda, and the listener is left wondering whether this is some new take on dubstep, trip hop or even 21st-century jazz, yet never doubting that ‘Wha Gwan’ is a truly original arrival, a new sound of the contemporary capital.
‘Wha Gwan’ is released via Audio Doughnuts on 7 October.
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