DJ and production duo Ancient Astronauts released their latest single, “Photoshop Reality” featuring BANTU, today (11.27.2020). The single is taken from their groundbreaking Afro-European album ‘ZIK ZAK’, which will be released on 1.22.2021 via Switchstance Recordings and features a variety of rising African musicians. The album was preceded by the noteworthy ‘Kampala Fire’ EP. BANTU is a 13-piece award-winning band based in Lagos, Nigeria. Lead by Ade Bantu, they have won the Kora Awards for Best Group West Africa and Best Group Africa and have received support from The Guardian and Music In Africa.
Ancient Astronauts began the well-known label Switchstance Recordings and have collaborated with the likes of Thievery Corporation, Akua Naru, The Pharcyde, and DJ Brace. The pair have made quite a name for themselves on stage, having performed at Lollapalooza Festival, toured the USA with Thievery Corporation, and appeared at the SXSW Festival (2011). The pair currently sit at over 21 million plays across streaming platforms, with features on the Atmospheric Calm Spotify playlist, and have received airplay from DJ Pathaan on the BBC Asian Network and a review from BBC Music to boot.
Ancient Astronauts is comprised of Kabanjak (aka Ingo Möll who is born and based in Duisburg, Germany) and Dogu (aka Tom Strauch who is from Moers and currently based in Cologne, Germany). Dogu performed at the very first Nyege Nyege Festival in Jinja, Uganda in 2015 which has since gone on to become widely acclaimed. The pair find inspiration in a variety of styles, including the likes of Madlib, Apollo Brown, Clutchy Hopkins, RJD2, King Tubby, Lee Perry, Dubmatix, Stone Love, J Dilla, Augustus Pablo, Midnite, DJ Premier, Pete Rock, and 9th Wonder. The unique stylings of “Photoshop Reality“, featuring BANTU, call to mind the likes of Public Enemy, Mos Def, and Seun Kuti & Egypt 80.
BANTU pride themselves in striving to create critical social commentary with their music, sending messages via music and inspiring people around the globe. Leader of the band, Ade Bantu’s lyrics focus on the entrapment of minds within social media and how the platforms can distort our perceptions of reality. Deep, masculine vocals dominate the single, however light and modern production style prevent them from overwhelming the listener – instead entrancing them into a rhythmic joyousness.
Speaking of the single, Ancient Astronauts tell us: “Our music always had a serious and conscious touch to it cause we believe that music can, and should, have a positive and thought-provoking effect. Ade’s lyrics in ‘Photoshop Reality’ really nail it when you think about today´s situation when it comes to social media, and Instagram in special. People trying to act like they made it, presenting themselves in the best way they can, overplaying reality, photoshopping not only their photos but their existence. It became a world of boasting and pretending things that don’t match reality. It feels as if people wanna escape reality through social media and luxury goods cause reality is too harsh for them. But then they don’t find their way back to reality. So they live in that ‘Photoshop Reality’.”
‘ZIK ZAK‘ Tracklisting:
- Upliftment Skit featuring C Wyne Nalukalala
- Basonyiwe featuring Spyda MC
- Pagliacci´s Reprise featuring Joyce Olong
- Ghetto Youth Never Give Up featuring C Wyne Nalukalala
- Pump Up The Sound featuring Bani Fyah
- Moz Militant featuring Blaze 5th
- Tebamanyi featuring MoRoots
- Wan Aken featuring Brazen Rule
- Photoshop Reality featuring BANTU
- My Vision featuring Shoeshine Buoy
- Omuntu Wwo featuring MOTH
- No Luv featuring Modenine
- Social Distancing featuring Ife Piankhi
- Entandikwa featuring Abramz
- Deram Me 1 Minuto featuring Olho Vivo
- Source Of Life featuring Nilotika Cultural Ensemble
- Ddala featuring Spyda MC
- Simulizi Zetu featuring GP Rowdix
- Do It To The Beat featuring Blessed San
- Ziinga Zanram featuring Art Melody