Monday, December 5, 2016

Native Dancer: Pixies + In Clouds

London band Native Dancer was founded in 2013; it was named after Wayne Shorter's 1974 album, and like Shorter they are fearless sonic explorers: by mixing their favorite genres pop, soul, electronica, be-bop, hip hop, trip-hop and rock, the quintet has managed to come up with a sound that is remarkably distinct and utterly irresistible.

Jonathan Harvey (bass), Sam Crowe (keys), Joshua Blackmore (drums) and Josh Arcoleo (sax) all display truly outstanding musicianship; however, the group's ace is Frida Mariama Touray whose formidable voice is one of the finest I've ever heard.

Born and raised in Sweden, the 26-year-old vocalist has been living in the UK since 2010. Her resume is impressive: a Bachelor degree in popular music performance from the British and Irish Modern Music Institute aka BIMM Institute, steady work with Lianne La Havas among others, plus playing in several bands. She dropped the excellent solo EP 'Mamas Fiestis' in 2011, but in Native Dancer she seems to have found her musical home, releasing two stellar EPs with the band and regularly playing live with the lads.

Native Dancer will be performing at next year's SXSW Festival in Austin (March 13 - 19) which will hopefully attract industry attention in the States as well as gain them many new American fans.

The superb live performance of the song "Pixies" was filmed in London on October 20 as part of the ongoing concert series SoFar (Songs From a Room). (NOTE: "Pixies" is not included on either of the band's two EPs and so must be a recent composition.)

The beautiful video for the sublime track "In Clouds" off the 2016 EP 'Vol II' was directed by London based photographer Tom Griffiths.