Two years after the acclaimed Wogdog Blues, Art Melody returns with Moogho – meaning “world” in Mooré, the language of the Mossi people of Burkina Faso. The album explores bridges between continents, styles and times, as Art Melody raps and sings on top of uncompromising productions by long-time partner Redrum, aided by a slew of far-reaching international producers.
Moogho is released exactly one year after the Burkinabè insurrection that successfully ousted president Blaise Compaoré. The album also comes out days after a recent failed coup in Burkina Faso, a reminder of the still frail state of affairs in Ouagadougou. This fragility heightens the importance of artists like Art Melody, who has remained vocal and critical throughout the turmoil, without ever losing his faith in the Burkinabè people and in particular its youth.
On Moogho, Art Melody shares his commentary with inimitable technique, rapping and singing in both Mooré and Dioula, flowing freely in a current of hip-hop, electro, blues, Afrobeat, bass music and free jazz. This deliberate juxtaposition of Burkinabè reality and global musicality sets Art Melody in the lineage of musical trailblazers such as Afrika Bambaata, Archie Shepp, The Clash or Manu Dibango, who all blurred lines and embraced diverse influences and genres.
Moogho's powerful statement is in sharp contrast with the stringent and absurdly repressive immigration policies of our times. It stands against cultural segmentation and social segregation. Moogho is a universal dance, a global vibration hailing straight from the streets of Ouagadougou.
Standout tracks include the horn-driven ‘Karong Korogo’ and ‘Ki Kanga’, while songs like ‘Ya N-Targoama’ and ‘Wakat Songo’ venture into more experimental, bass-heavy electronic territory, like a West African version of Tricky, slowed down further on ‘Hey Mah’ and ‘Micro Makré’. Throughout the album’s 12 tracks permeates a sense of discomfort, a determination to push boundaries while forcing one to always listen attentively rather than simply play it in the background.
The new release has already been well received by major players in the global music industry. British DJ Gilles Peterson said: "Feeling this, great A&R". Bram de Cock of Rebel Up! in Belgium said, “Excellent, original with impeccable production". Samrai from Swing Ting (UK) said: "This is great. Love the variance through the set."
Listen the album below and buy it on iTunes here.