"Umbrellas on the Beach" by Nonku Phiri, Fever Trails, Bra Sol and Card on Spokes

In the first of a new weekly feature, our music maven Shiba Mazaza introduces a smashing collab featuring Nonku Phiri, Fever Trails, Bra Sol and Card on Spokes.

Track of the Week "Umbrellas on the Beach", featuring Nonku Phiri, Fever Trails, Bra Sol and Card on Spokes, is a gauntlet of sounds, swimming just enough for those with loose hips, while holding enough mystique for those intent on escaping into the vastness of this track’s electro-rap landscape. Phiri’s vocals add a touch more texture to the ripples of stuttering gulps, groans and grunts, while Bra Sol’s blunted sermon adds a touch of sass as the track ends. “Absurd with the verbs and the flows astounding,” the perfectly balanced elements of this track trickle into each other quite cinematically.

It’s been a few short months since Design Indaba Music Circuit 2014, and South Africa’s robust electronic music scene is facing its highest point yet. Each of our featured acts has been extremely busy since, cooking up new ways to please the ear.

BIG FKN GUN has been patrolling the country in a slew of charismatic performances, following some syrupy, extremely well-crafted free-for-download releases in “Taxi Cab and “Gqoma, featuring the dreaded Hip Hop artist Manelis.

Alchemist Shane Cooper continues to show the finesse that won him his South African Music Award (SAMA) earlier this year for the jazz-orientated Oscillations, creating ambitious music from organic sounds. As Card On Spokes, he is due to release his Lead Me to the Water EP, on 23 June, remixed by even more of South Africa’s most in-tune, with contributions from Maramza, Jumping Back Slash and Dank. Nonku Phiri has been hard at work as well, flexing her creative muscle as JungFreud featured on PHfat’s latest single, “Lights Out,” as well as performing alongside her band with astoundingly beautiful and incontestable performances at Straight No Chaser jazz club in Cape Town.

Nic van Reenen as Fever Trails continues to climb the respect ladder with his motif-like atmospheric work on his latest, “Pattern Language”, while remaining a dedicated string puller in instrumental band Bateleur. We’ve had to wait until now for the release of the collabs that were conjured up at the Red Bull Music Academy Bass Camp Johannesburg in late 2013, which followed workshops headed by greats such as Hugh Masekela and Black Coffee. That much talented exchange in one place makes for a veritable gold mine of great music.