Preview: Penya - Beat Your Demon EP Launch
A few weeks back, international vibe connoisseurs Penya released their new EP, Beat Your Demon via On The Corner Records - their second outing on the eclectic label, following last year’s heavy 12-inch Acelere. As usual, the music is united first and foremost by deep, pulsing rhythms excavated from across the globe, while electronic and instrumental elements flesh out the rest of the Penya package. The EP also welcomes the outfit’s newest member Viva Msimang on trombone.
‘Why So Angry’ heads things up with a tabla-led intro, which lurches into a club-ready heater featuring the talents of Indian producer, Daisho. Title track ‘Beat Your Demon’ is raw, sinister and heavily dressed with Afro-Latin polyrhythms. Singer Lilli Elina’s voice cuts through the percussion, bearing witness to Candomblé influences from Brazil, while subtle electronic effects and Misimang’s trombone solo switch up the vibe about half way through for a serene second half which loses none of the intensity.
‘Cham Bomb’ carries the thread that links this startlingly self-assured EP. While straying into ethereal almost trip-hoppy sounds and beats, the focus is on delicate, compelling mantras sung by the whole ensemble that never tire the ear - you just want to hear each one again as the inflections of the rhythm seamlessly change. As for the last tune, ‘Karachi (What Could Have Been)’, well - it’s just a proper banger.
Penya will be launching the new EP on 18th May at the Total Refreshment Centre as part of SOAS Radio's second installment of Sounds in Common. Sounds In Common brings together artists and ensembles with different insights on shared origins and influences - and with that in mind, the line-up also welcomes the all-female Afro-Brazilian ensemble Let Drum Beat to TRC for the first time. You can check out a special Magnus PI minimix of what’s lighting their shared fires right now on SOAS radio.
In the build up to the show our friends at On The Corner and SOAS Radio have sent us this electric live performance of the title track from Beat Your Demon. Check it out, pick up the new EP and head to the show on the 18th May.