In April leading Kenyan electronic group Just A Band made a sad announcement; they would be embarking on a two-year hiatus. “We’re typing at you today to announce that Just A Band is taking a break. Just to clarify, we’re not breaking up! We’re just taking some time away from our group to work on our individual projects for a while.” In light of a similar announcement we heard from One Direction last year, the latter part of this statement will be of little comfort to JAB diehards. We have been in thrall of Dan ‘NairobiDhobi’ Muli, ‘Blinky’ Bill Sellanga and Mbithi Muasya ever since they first spliced indigenous African sounds with the signature pounding bass and fast drums of house music on their 2008 debut album ‘Scratch to Reveal’. Since then the band has grown, travelled the world and produced two solid albums. Just when it seemed the trio was getting ready to blindside us with a new production (last September they dropped the single ‘Winning in Life‘), they decide to go their separate ways.
But according to the band’s parting shot, we were to expect “a tonne of cool musical projects” from Blinky Bill in the meantime. So I guess ‘I Should Have Learnt Kung Fu’, in which he partners with Dan and Aero Manyelo, is the first of many. It starts off with sounds from what could be a stringed instrument from Western Kenya before segueing into an irresistibly danceable chainwork of drum kicks and rimshots. Surrounding this delectable interplay of traditional and modern vibes are the synth touches that you will typically find in techno, dance and house tunes. Apart from sporadically repeated chants of the song title, there are no vocals in the song, ensuring minimal distractions as you shake a leg on the dancefloor, or on your living room rug.
Miami Based, Internationally Known