Krm & Kmru: Disconnect


Release Date: 06-14-2024

SKU: 5053760117537

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Krm & Kmru: Disconnect

1. Product Details

Twin heavyweights Kevin Richard Martin (The Bug) and Joseph Kamaru (KMRU) unite for Disconnect, a powerful study of dread, hope, and profound sonics that marries depth-trawling dub with Kamaru's voice, ambient sensibilities, and negative space. Kevin Martin first became aware of Kenyan ambient musician KMRU "watching the short 2020 documentary Under The Bridge," he tells us. "Which, aside from immediately finding Joseph's approach to sound and music so instantly impressive, I also found his spoken voice possessed a captivating, lilting, tonal quality, with his soft-spoken accent." Following this, Martin dug into Kamaru's records, and found not only a kindred spirit in skilful exploration of sonic space, but also a fan of The Bug. So began a mutually respectful relationship, initially held in Instagram DMs and reciprocal admiration for each other's work and eventually blossoming into an invitation sent by Kevin to Joseph to collaborate on a new album. The results - debut collaboration album Disconnect - collect a back-and-forth creative dialogue that started life in Martin's studio. "I think I surprised Joseph by suggesting he contributes vocals," Martin tells us. This ability to identify, isolate and exploit the nonstandard is a trait shared by both musicians and employed to devastating effect on Disconnect. It's vocals, sitting somewhere between intonation and spoken word, capture the ear and fizz with simmering power. They are indeed a surprise, coming from a musician specialising in instrumental, field recording-laced ambient musics, but tell intensely evocative stories, weaving poetry into the pair's grandiose greyscale musical architecture. "The album originated from an exploration of a text I wrote during my sound art studies, delving into the complexities of Otherness," Kamaru explains. "The project served as a response to Audre Lorde's idea that differences should be embraced as a dynamic force within humanity, rather than a perceived threat." Joseph Kamaru recently moved from his native Nairobi to a wholly new environment in Berlin's classical music schools, "at a time when Europeans in saddeningly large numbers are increasingly bigoted and unwelcoming to non-Europeans," adds Martin. This theme is echoed throughout the music of Disconnect, not only in Kamaru's lyrics and lines of poetry, but also in the unity found between the duo's respective cultural backgrounds. It is an interesting observation that Martin's music has often been created alongside and in great support of Black and non-white voices, where Kamaru's solo work stands out in a space traditionally occupied by Western musicians.

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