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World - Released June 11, 2021 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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Ambient - Released May 21, 2021 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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Ambient - Released May 21, 2021 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released April 9, 2021 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released March 12, 2021 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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Throughout history, being a witch has often meant little more than simply being a woman who was difficult to deal with. In modern Ghana, where the tradition is still strong, "witches" are typically village widows (whose husbands had valuable property before they died) or women suffering from mental or physical illness. Rather than being supported by their community, these women are excluded and pushed out—often violently—and their property seized. One should not mistake this ostracism for an unmodern belief system—it's sexism, opportunism, and oppression given a cloak of spiritual traditionalism. But it persists, and these women are often left with nowhere to go other than one of a half-dozen "witch camps'' located around the country. Though the Ghanian government is attempting to close them, they provide, at the very least, safety and shelter, but not much else. In an effort to highlight the injustice inherent in their sheer existence, ethnomusicologist Ian Brennan went into several witch camps and recorded the "instant compositions'' of their residents. Singing—or chanting in some cases—in local dialects and using instrumentation at hand, these 22 short recordings are emotional documentation, rather than the capturing of some folkloric traditions. The anguish, disorientation, and spiritual resilience of these women is apparent throughout, whether on a pensive melody like "Left to Live Life," or the discordant blend of vocal tics and electronic-y distortion on "I Have Lost All That I Love." On "Witch Song," multiple voices, textures, and a driving, percussive arrangement combine for a piece that is largely unintelligible to English-speaking ears, yet completely relatable. The unrehearsed and unpolished nature of the performances (only one of the singers had ever sung by themselves before) and the seemingly improvised nature of the compositions (using everything from a deflated balloon to a tea pot for instrumentation) makes a casual listening session impossible; the insistent and heartfelt nature of the material combines with a dynamic and bracing recording technique to demand your attention. And, as with Brennan's previous work with the Zomba Prison Project, your attention is necessary. By shining a spotlight on oppression using music, it becomes much harder to look away. © Jason Ferguson/Qobuz
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World - Released February 26, 2021 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released February 26, 2021 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released February 19, 2021 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released November 20, 2020 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released November 13, 2020 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released June 26, 2020 | Six Degrees – New Releases

In 2016, the adventurous Brazilian singer/songwriter Céu delivered her global club phenomenon Tropix. The album has since developed a reputation far beyond the confines of the dancefloor, as sophisticated pop audiences embrace her integration of pulsing electro, spaced-out samba, and elastic, sci-fi disco. Her earlier catalog paved the way with bold but sultry expositions of Brazil's melodic song tradition and her own preference for rhythmic and harmonic exploration. APKA!'s title translates as a metalinguistic cry of unrestrained joy by Céu's youngest son. Though a more minimally produced effort than Tropix, the euphoric effect remains, given Céu's treatment of the material. She employs the same crew as last time -- guitarist Pedro Sa, co-producer keyboardist Hervé Salters, bassist Lucas Martins, and drummer/co-producer Pupilo -- though the set's final track was produced by hot Brazilian production duo Tropikillaz (DJ Zegon and Laudz). Céu wrote eight of the set's ten tracks. Opener "Off (Sad Siri)" is a dreamy, sensual ballad that drifts between the bardos of saudade and erotic love song. Immediately following, "Coreto" directs her love to both a paramour and her band. Its warm, minor-key electro frame greets the expectant possibilities of night with a hooky, passionate Holland-Dozier-Holland-esque chorus that expands its dimensions. "Forçar O Verão" emerges as a shock, with synths and vamping guitars (courtesy of guest Marc Ribot alongside Sa) weaves a new wave aesthetic (a la Ze Records) and also references Fear of Music-era Talking Heads with the lithe salaciousness in Céu's vocal. "Corpocontinente" is an odd but fine choice. Slower than everything that precedes it, this weave of keyboards, organic and synthetic beats, dirgey bass, and swirling ambient effects, creates a nocturnal soundscape around Céu. She uses it to her advantage in a breezy delivery that plumbs the aching, emotional depths of homesick longing and long-distance love. There are two covers here as well. "Pardo" was written specifically for Céu by Caetano Veloso, and features the iconic backing vocals of Seu Jorge atop a rhythmic base of Afrobeat, space-age funk, pop, and soul. The other cover is a sultry psych-pop song commissioned in English by Dinho, that also features Ribot. "Eye Contact" had to close the set: Given its alien beat consciousness, nothing else here could follow it. Produced and featuring Tropikillaz, it cobbles together zig-zagging samba, hip-hop, funky jazz, Kraftwerk-ian electro, and 21st century soul in a poetic narrative that's as vulnerable and reflective as it is prescient. APKA! integrates the creative lessons of all her previous outings and executes them boldly, in beautifully crafted artfully performed songs. While Tropix bridged past and present, with APKA! she sings from the future to reference the past and present in what currently amounts to Céu's artistic manifesto. © Thom Jurek /TiVo
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World - Released June 5, 2020 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released June 5, 2020 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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Alternative & Indie - Released June 5, 2020 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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Alternative & Indie - Released May 1, 2020 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released March 13, 2020 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released March 6, 2020 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released January 24, 2020 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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World - Released October 25, 2019 | Six Degrees – New Releases

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Electronic - Released July 26, 2019 | Six Degrees – New Releases