This year, we’ve paid special attention to artists like Ibeyi and Daymé Arocena, who not only approach their music with tons of soul, but also embrace their Afro-Caribbean roots and the Yoruba language. ÌFÉ is a new Puerto Rican project that just came our way, and it also fits that description perfectly.
ÌFÉ, which is also the Yoruban word for “love” and “expansion,” was created by producer Mark Underwood, or Otura Mun, and features a wide array of singers and musicians who blend the organic instrumentation of Afro-Caribbean rhythms with electronics to bring the region’s traditional sounds into 2015.
The first single off their upcoming debut album is called “3 Mujeres (Iború Iboya Ibosheshé),” and they are promoting it with a very special live video recording of the musicians performing the song in Otura Mun’s studio, who is also in charge of candidly introducing the musicians involved in the session. Directed by Jakob Steen and shot entirely in black and white, the video shows the members of ÌFÉ giving it their all, mixing African percussion with electronic drum pads and celestial, prerecorded synths. Kathy Cepeda leads the vocals, washing the song in communal warmth and feel-good vibes, thanks to the Yoruba and Spanish lyrics.