November 13, 2008
One of my favorite tracks over the past few months has been BLK JKS' "Mzabalazo." According to the band, the song is an "update of a classic apartheid era toyi toyi fight song when folks got it crackin in the streets." This recording, from a special Fader magazine 7", keeps those protest origins intact, as a squall of guitar noise and a brief instrumental intro soon give way to shouted call & response vocals. You can grab the track in mp3 form at the band's blog(or this direct download link).
If you're the type who likes to check things out before going all the way with a dl, watch this YouTube video to not only HEAR the song (in lo-fi YouTube sound), but also (sort of) see it spinning on a turntable.
In the video below, recorded April 2008 at Harriet's Alter Ego in Brooklyn, you can hear a version of the song more characteristic of the band's recent live performances, with the structure a bit more loose and open to variation than the studio version.
Check out BLK JKS' website, blkjks.blogspot.com, for more videos and mp3s.