The core of Buraka Som Sistema consists of producers Lil' John, Riot and Conductor and MC Kalaf, but the group counts amongst its ranks an extended family of dancers and MCs from around the globe. Every face is a valued part of Buraka's limb-enslaving hybrid assault of native Angolan Kuduro and the roughest globe-scoured ghetto-funk riddims.
The group began by releasing a slew of breakthrough singles and torched the blogosphere with their viral video "Sound Of Kuduro" featuring M.I.A. Fader mag dubbed their live feast, "One of the most jaw-droppingly effusive club moments we've experienced." All this would help earn them MTV Europe Award nominations and an invitation into Damon Albarn's revered Africa Express project.
With powerful comrades like Diplo and Switch, and collaborators in Kano, M.I.A. and Hot Chip, they've helped destroy dated preconceptions of world music, with cross-continental collisions responsible for many of the gnarliest club cuts in years.
"Making people dance like hell, sweat like hell and scream like hell" Buraka Som Sistema
'Black Diamond' is Buraka's debut LP. The title is a reference to the inherent corruption in the oil and diamond businesses, subjects close to home, and one of various cultural dialogues that take place amongst their rowdy beats. Kuduro music itself came about as a response to Angola's tempestuous and uncertain social and political climates - recurring themes in the record. Present also is a message of hope, as Angola begins to move away from its dark political past. Indicative of the record's boundary-smashing appeal, it was recorded in various locations, from their native Portugal and Angola, to a variety of London studio hotspots.
Tracks like 'Skank & Move' with Kano roar with an unruly bass-quake only possible in the post-grime era. Baile kingpin Deize Tigrona brings the Brazilian nastiness funk carioca-style on 'Aqui Para Voces', nodding to BSS' South American allies, whilst Angolan scud-missile Pongolove is one of the various spitters to showcase the irresistibly stark, hypnotic charms of their trademark sound on 'Kalemba'. It's an album that?s as inclusive as it is fiercely driven and focused. Buraka have a mission completed.