Ibeyi Returns With Euphoric Plea for a Better World In “Away, Away”

Lead Photo: Photo by Amber Mahoney. Courtesy of XL Recordings

French-Cuban twins Lisa-Kaindé and Naomi Diaz — the duo behind Ibeyi — have kept us hooked since their captivating self-titled album dropped in 2015. They had a short (but stunning) cameo in Beyoncé’s Lemonade, their music provided the backdrop for Mauro Bigonzetti’s gorgeous Alvin Ailey dance performance “Deep,” and they even snuck fans the dark ballad “Lost In My Mind” in February. Today, they have one more track to share: a hopeful anthem for a better world, called “Away, Away.”

The song and accompanying video dropped this morning. “Away, Away” starts with the sounds of sirens and honking horns in the distance, symbolizing the chaos of the world the twins have observed. But, with sparse beats and soaring vocals woven in and out of the song, Ibeyi alludes to their optimism in disordered times: “I don’t give up/I feel the pain, feel the pain/But I’m alive…Why should I be racing?” The track winds to a close with a Yoruba chant for the Orisha Aggayu, a ferryman-like god who provides strength, according to the band.

The twins described the song as “looking out onto the world’s craziness, which is symbolized by the sirens heard in the track, and wondering if the promises of a better world will be made true.”

With its nods to Afro-Cuban rhythms and Yoruba prayers, “Away, Away” continues the duo’s practice of blending modernity and tradition in their music. While the sounds on Ibeyi were dreamy and more ethereal, “ Away, Away” is upbeat and direct — and it gives us a hint of what the twosome might cook up for their second album, which they’ve been working on in London. If you need more of the twins before the album drops, they’ve announced a European tour this fall.