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Nightmares on Wax launches new label with heartfelt Louis VI release

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Nightmares on Wax has shared his new label, HiyaSelf Recordings Unlimited, and kicked things off with a stellar release from Louis VI.

The afrobeat-infused single, ‘Yonn Manman Laté’, features Jazz drummer Moses Boyd and is taken from Louis’ forthcoming album, ‘EARTHLING’, also set for release on HiyaSelf in March 2023.

It is said to be an “abstract expression” of the forthcoming album, and of the ‘Earthling’ as a concept, with the musician drawing upon influences from hip-hop, jazz, electronic, afrobeat, funk, R&B and soul in an attempt to directly challenge the colonial legacy of climate change.

Read this next: Fuelled by freedom: Nightmares on Wax has made the soulful soundtrack to a reopening world

“The ‘Earthling’ dancer represents our spirit, unstained by colonialism and slavery, free, energetic, powerful, alive & sovereign, still connected to nature and the aliveness of this planet,” explains Louis VI on the presence behind the single and forthcoming album.

“But as she lands on these colonial shores, her journey further and further away from nature and home, and further and further into the heart of darkness, into the colonial machine of the stark industrial city backdrops of Britain, starts to take its toll. Her journey deeper into a nature-depleted land that drove the depletion of her own, she becomes more and more sick being away from nature in the polluted cities. She represents the developing amnesia for our own life force, our connection to nature and the planet as her distance grows, until it weakens so much she must return to survive.

“This Earthling – seen only by Louis & Moses – both from Dominica, shows her visibility to the diaspora, those who remember in their DNA something deeper, a time when their own ancestors were connected to Mother Nature before colonialism but also remembering the majestic beauty and one oneness the human spirit can be being connected again to this planet.”

Read this next: “The planet is our only dancefloor”: How dance music events are adapting to sustainability

The sentiment of the album – which is claimed to be “stacked full of features from the friends and musicians that surround Louis” – builds on speeches given by the musician at Glasgow’s 2021 COP26 Summit, and his various documentaries sharing his climate activism, with much of Louis’ writing and productions inspired by nature. And, for every song mastered on ‘EARTHLING’, a tree was planted with the record being pressed onto Green Vinyl.

‘Yonn Manman Laté’ is accompanied by an intriguing visual which you can check out below, and remix by Nightmares on Wax himself, who described it as real “fun” to work on. “There are so many amazing elements, coupled with a strong subject matter. I wanted to push it in the direction of the dancefloor. I knew it would be a banger in the club and did a flip for the DJs.”

Read this next: Rave the planet: How dance music can limit its environmental impact

“HiyaSelf was born out of the fact that my manager Kazim and I were (and still are) constantly sharing new music with each other,” Nightmares on Wax continues. “Plus we’re always been sent amazing unknown music from lots of artists around the world. So, it felt natural for us to create HiyaSelf Recordings Unlimited as the logical next step; a platform that’s all about expressing art that resonates with us and we think will connect with our community worldwide.”

Niamh Ingram is Mixmag’s Weekend Editor, follow her on Twitter

Written by: Tim Hopkins

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