Today, fresh from announcing their brand new album ‘Freedom Fables’ (coming via Strut Records on 5th February 2021), Nubiyan Twist return with a further taster of the record, the determined ‘Buckle Up‘. It features a guest turn from UK jazz saxman Soweto Kinch who brings burning alto solos and rhymes to the track alongside the band’s own vocalist Nick Richards as they aim to “find the door to peace” among life’s challenges. “Soweto is a trailblazer of the UK scene both as an alto player and as a rapper with a unique flow and important lyricism,” reflects the band’s Tom Excell. “It was really important for us to invite him to contribute to the album.”
“‘Buckle Up’ is Nubiyan Twist in their element,” continues Excell. “Intricate horn arrangements, hard hitting grooves, smooth soulful vocals, twisted basslines, intricate percussion and live electronics create the backdrop for UK jazz giant Soweto Kinch to lay down a killer alto solo and 16 bars of equal stupendousness.
“Lyrically the song explores the sensation of feeling stuck in a loop or cycle where you can’t seem to find fulfilment or satisfaction in your life. It’s also about the ambition to make changes, work with yourself and find new perspectives and alternate ways of approaching life to bring about positive change.”
The video for Buckle Up is an inspired plasticine stop-motion animation by Bristol-based video artist, Hector K-B.
Woven around soul searching, cautionary tales and parables for modern life, Freedom Fables – the follow-up to 2019’s acclaimed ‘Jungle Run’ LP – is the most accomplished yet by the Leeds / London collective, effortlessly fusing different soul, jazz and global styles with great musicianship and lyrics.
“Freedom Fables’ reflects on the power of narratives. Each vocalist on this record explores their own memoirs, a freedom of expression underpinning our belief that music is the ultimate narrative for unity,” explains Excell. “The record references a lot of music that we all loved during our formative years; you can hear touches of broken beat, blunted hip hop, highlife, Latin, jazz and UK soul running through the tracks.”
The fluid, wistful first single 24-7 featuring Ego Ella May and the boisterous follow-up Tittle Tattle featuring Cherise (Jazz FM Vocalist of the Year) have both been championed by Mary Anne Hobbs and added to the BBC 6Music playlist. Cherise also features on the loping Flow dealing with the ebb and flow of anxiety and the epic Brazilian jazz workout, Keeper.
Richards continues the “dust yourself off and find hope” theme on the rousing Wipe Away Tears; Ghanaian great Pat Thomas voices a gorgeous Accra meets London highlife jam; massive new vocal talent Ria Moran (a contemporary from the band’s time at Leeds College Of Music) steps up on the sensual Morning Light tackling delicate complexities of the heart and long time friend of the band, K.O.G., brings his trademark full strength Afro dancefloor energy to If I Know.
Shaping up to be a modern classic, ‘Freedom Fables’ is set to catapult Nubiyan Twist even further into the limelight and cement their position as one of the UK’s leading soulful collectives of the current generation.
The album was produced by Tom Excell at Henwood Studios in Oxfordshire and mixed by Oli Barton Wood and Tom Excell at The Premises. Artwork comes courtesy of Emma Rodriguez aka Mooncrab. The band will be touring across the UK in autumn 2021.
2021 UK Tour Dates:
14 Sept – Chalk, Brighton
16 Sept – The Bullingdon, Oxford
18 Sept – SWX, Bristol
19 Sept – The Globe, Cardiff
21 Sept – Hare & Hounds, Birmingham
22 Sept – Rescue Rooms, Nottingham
23 Sept – Gorilla, Manchester
24 Sept – Oval Space, London
25 Sept – Arts Centre, Norwich
27 Sept – CCA, Glasgow
29 Sept – Wardrobe, Leeds
30 Sept – The Crescent, York
1 Oct – The Foundry, Sheffield
2 Oct – Future Yard, Birkenhead
Follow Nubiyan Twist:
With thanks to Brace Yourself PR