Lela Gaye | October 2017
It has been twelve days since Ibeyi dropped their second album, “Ash”, and ever since
my head has been spinning in romance for these two talented artists.
The discovery is quite amazing. It was one of those boring Friday nights when you’re
just scrolling on all your music sites, social media accounts, and different friends’ Spotify
playlists looking for something new. For me, I often end up on one of my Apple Music
playlists that always has something beautiful that slipped through the cracks.
Around about 11:30pm on this Friday night I make it to my “The Late Night Menu”
playlist. Just by the name, I knew I was going get what I needed. Initially I was drawn by
the album art; I was intrigued by this face covered by a paper face. It was so fascinating
that I needed to hear the song that came wrapped in this cover. The song on the playlist
was Ibeyi’s new single “Deathless”, featuring Kamasi Washington.
All I can remember from that listen was needing to share it. It was an unapologetic,
ruthless anthem. The strong instrumentation on “Deathless” is different than their softer
sounding songs such as “Mama Says” or “Stranger/Lover”, but still emotional like every
other song they write. In these TWELVE days I’ve listened to both their albums and
anything else I can dig up.
Again, it has only been TWELVE days since I’ve even discovered and given myself time
to listen to their music, and it is honestly a shame it took me so long to come across
them. I feel like they’ve fulfilled a part of me that I didn't even know I needed.
It is a rarity that a sound so deeply rooted in a mixture of cultures sounds so fresh and
contemporary. Ibeyi is just that. They are composed of twin sisters born in Paris, France
from a black-Cuban father and white French mother. They use the sound their Yoruba
ancestors kept alive to push messages of immortality.
This new record is a journey of the pride in being a fearless woman, and a story of joy
and hope. There are some great samples and features ranging from Meshell
Ndegeocello to Michelle Obama. I mean, if you ain't intrigued by Michelle Obama, you
The duo will be performing at the Metro Chicago for 30 Days in Chicago presented by
Red Bull Sound Effect on November 13th. I’ve already got my tickets and cannot wait to
see them take their sound to the stage.
Hope to see you all there!