“Merging hip hop and African instrumentation into something mesmeric and true.” The Quietus
“Speaks to Zimbabwe’s history (“Chimurenga” translates to “struggle”), but this is classic message rap that spans regionally.” Pitchfork
Chimurenga Renaissance fuse together otherworldly sonics, Zimbabwean beats, Afro-conscious hip-hop, Congolese guitar ambiance and political heat. They mix electronic (ie. synths and samples) and organic instrumentation (ie. ngoma drums and mbira thumb pianos). Chimurenga Renaissance’s first release for Glitterbeat Records is ‘Girlz with Gunz’, a 27-minute, 11-song EP (vinyl/download). A full-length album will follow in the autumn of 2016.
The duo was formed in 2012 and features Tendai Maraire, from the widely acclaimed Seattle group Shabazz Palaces, one of the leaders of hip-hop’s “audacious progressive fringe” (New York Times). Tendai hails from a renowned Zimbabwean musical lineage. His father, Abraham Dumisani Maraire, moved to the United States in the late 60’s and helped create a flourishing Zimbabwean music scene in the Pacific Northwest. Tendai’s partner in Chimurenga Renaissance, guitarist Hussein Kalonji (formerly known as the rapper H-Bomb), is a first generation Congolese American born in Washington DC. His father, Raymond “Braynck” Kalonji, is a Congolese guitar legend credited with pioneering the Rumba/Soukouss sound.
New EP out 5 February 2016 on Glitterbeat Records.
EP video teaser: https://youtu.be/KkSqr_XvVVE