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Capture d’écran 2017-03-23 à 18.47.21

‘My first listen to ÌFÉ’s debut album, IIII+IIII (pronounced Eji-Ogbe), was such an incredibly special moment that I wish I could repeat it over and over.’ – NPR
Read the article on NPR.

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New album IIII+IIII out on March 31st
You can pre-order it here.

IIII+IIII, pronounced “Edgy-Og-Beh” is the title of the nine song debut album from Puerto Rico’s critically acclaimed electronic ensemble, ÌFÉ. Headed by San Juan based African American Otura Mun, himself a Babalawo or high priest in the Yoruban religion, ÌFÉ has captured the imagination and ears of the international community since releasing its first two singles, 3 Mujeres (Iború Iboya Ibosheshé) and House of Love (Ogbe Yekun). Now, following successful European and North American tours, ÌFÉ releases its first full length musical offering, a 45 minute opening ceremony that seems equal parts blessing, adoration, and manifesto.

From its opening track to its closing prayer the album conveys a deep sense of spiritual intent, a sureness in its voice and purpose that is both brave and bold while maintaining the vulnerability and unsureness that the most intimate and honest of conversations always require. It’s been clear from the beginning that ÌFÉ is in a space uniquely its own. From the way in which the music is conceived, a live electronic performance, no programming, to its component parts, Cuban Rumba, Sacred Yoruba praise songs, Jamaican Dancehall, and American R&B, to the way it moves seamlessly from English to Spanish to Yoruba, the music is wilfully out of genre, yet focused and clear in a way that makes its newness seem rare, compelling. Serene and floating at times, determined, erotic, and raw at others, the music is as improbable as it is natural, a youthful knowing sound, aware of the weight of its voice, the ground that’s been traveled, and the urgency and uncompromising fierceness needed to meet the day.

BANGAH SINGLE ARTWORK

Single BANGAH (Pico y Palo) now available on:
Spotify | Apple Music | Bandcamp

BANGAH (Pico y Palo), the lead single from ÌFÉ’s forthcoming LP “IIII+IIII”, is a literal one word war cry for freedom in the here and now, a musical declaration of independence. Built around director Otura Mun’s reflections on the Orisha Ogun, the Yoruban “God of War”, Bangah is the relentless sound of the machete, the face of determination, and the flat out rejection of fear on any personal level. It’s decided, we prepare, we begin. BANGAH!

 

Read ÌFÉ’s Otura Mun interview with The Fader
‘Meet ÌFÉ, The Puerto Rican-Based Group Singing Songs Of Decolonization. Yoruba with soul and hip-hop influences that create an expansive Afro-Caribbean groove.’

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MAR APRL TOUR POSTER 5

Conversations With Otura Mun

VSCO presents a short film about a man breaking free from his past to forge a new identity and to realize his place in the world through music and spirituality. Featuring Otura Mun, the bandleader of the contemporary Afro-Caribbean ensemble ÌFÉ.

Directed by Omid Fatemi and filmed on location in Puerto Rico. 

Conversations With Otura Mun

Otura Mun has experienced a transformation. He has altered the relationship to his reality by shifting his perceptions from being based solely around a world that is material to one that is largely spiritual. And this short film encounters him just a year on from when he committed himself to this new state of being, when he was reborn into his present name after being ordained in Cuba as a Babaláwo (a priest) in the Ifá sect of the Yoruba faith. The film explores this seminal undertaking, its reasons and effects, through a series of interviews recorded with Otura Mun in Santurce, Puerto Rico where he lives and creates music as the bandleader of the contemporary Afro-Caribbean ensemble ÌFÉ.

Through hours of conversation with the director, Otura Mun traced the many roads leading to this point in time: starting life as a newborn as a ward of the state of Indiana, a youth spent searching for identity against the racial hegemony of a midwestern town, the aftermath of the tragic loss of a younger brother that would find him seeking a private solace on an island where he did not yet speak the language, a love of music and the power of the drum that would lead him from collegiate drumlines and studying with master Puerto Rican percussionists to where he is today as a musical ambassador and a disciple of a religion that originated in ancient Africa.

In a return visit to Puerto Rico, director Omid Fatemi crafted a film around these audio recordings that is equal parts dreamscape and documentary. In the film we find a man breaking free from his past and emerging from one transformation only to realize himself at the crossroads of another, this time with his faith, his own music, and his name — his identity — guiding him from the present into the future.

Omid Fatemi is a filmmaker living in Los Angeles. He has worked with VSCO over the last year as the director and creative producer for short films on Korey DaneShigeto, and Savages.

Conversations With Otura Mun

OTURA MUN trailer.mp4

UMBO (Come Down), is a musical invitation to the benevolent forces that be. Drawing from rhythms and incantations of sacred Yoruba praise songs, ÌFÉ calls out to those would would hear us in our times of need.

Keenly aware that our most potent gods, and loves, are first met dancing, and we take our plunges from there. Part celebration, part adoration,UMBO beckons us into that space between places, where we can let go and be brought to shore.

Also available on BandcampSpotify | Youtube

Via VIBE