The broken beats, chopped up vocals and pulsating synths, three sounds that when put together with a little Mzansi flavour, produce the phenomenon that is Gqom. These are the sounds that spoke to Audioboyz years ago in the streets of Newlands West, Durban and led them to a sound set to dominate the airwaves the world over.
With their latest offering, recorded at the Red Bull Music studios, Audioboyz give us their take on the Gqom sound, showcasing what they’ve been crafting over the half a decade they’ve been in the industry. The EP, titled Skywalker, is now available on Soundcloud.
The group made up of four DJs – Nkululeko Dlamini (DJ Motion), Sihle Zondi – (DJ Fatonic), Njabulo Myeza – (DJ Nje) and Percival Mathews – (Percy) – met in their home town of Newlands West in Durban and bonded over their love of house music, taught each other how to DJ and produce, and have been inseparable since.
“What inspired us to make Gqom music is the unique sound that the genre possesses: The bass, kick, hi-hats, to rhythmic elements fused together to make something magical, but most importantly, that the sound originates from Durban where we grew up.” says DJ Motion. Percy adds, “There are no rules to making a Gqom song and that’s what drew us in deep: that you can fuse it with any other genre and subsequently get something good that will make the masses go crazy.”
Working with Red Bull Music Studios has been years in the making as Percy explains, “We met the Red Bull team in Durban at the University Of Kwa-Zulu Natal (Howard College) during the Red Bull Campus Clash in 2014. We had a little chat with the team and realised that they already knew us and listened to our music. We kept in touch and were invited to record at the Red Bull Music Studios in Cape Town. We’ve had a great relationship with the brand since, even performing at the Red Bull stage at Oppikoppi Festival.”
The studio, which focuses on providing a creative workspace and industry opportunities to both local and international artists and producers, has a global network encompassing major cities across the globe including Amsterdam, Auckland, Copenhagen, Los Angeles, London, Madrid, New York, Paris and Sao Paolo.
The new EP follows the group’s September release The Rise of Gqom, a body of word that represents the group’s contribution to the genre. With the three tracks in the Skywalker EP– Burning Groove, Skywalker and Let Them Dance, Audioboyz are kicking off 2018 with a bang.
The EP is now available on Red Bull Music Studios’ Soundcloud https://soundcloud.com/red-bull-studio-ct.