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Durojaiye Versatile – The Fermented Sessions

Bella Kardasis


West coast Druojaiye Versatile, hits us with his debut album. A self-proclaimed “Menage-A-Trios of Hip Hop, Sade and Kraftwerk” – and that is quite accurate. With influences spanning genres of 60′s Rock and Folk, 70′s Soul and Jazz to Blues, Hip Hop, Freestyle and 80′s Pop, set us up for a soundscape through eras. In essence tracks such as Rise remind me of what Keith Haring did with subway art in the early 80’s. This fusion of East and West coast stylised awareness is probably what helps glue these styles together.

Growing up in his parents San Francisco household the ambience was constantly enriched by their love for playing blues, jazz and soul records – emulated in the grainy nostalgia of Kuba’s Coming. His exposure to music and production from an early age, on a trip to Los Angeles set the wheels in motion later coaxing his broadening of horizons and solidifying his vision to turn “thoughts into things”.

The fusion is almost immediate between tracks, the contrasts of synthesised and organic sounds stabilise the divide of genres. Allusion to a Herbie Hancock-esque approach in Lost and Bree are tightly composed and mesmerising. Combined with a 80’s punchy constant beat, the narrative in this track reads like the thought he aims to illustrate. I set this to ‘gapless playback’ while I was riding the London Underground the other day and it was like having your own personal soundtrack. Dodging obtrusive frequencies, over-repetitive hooks and yet maintaining the challenge in composition, The Fermented Sessions is one of those rare albums that can be listened to all the way through and still be considered for a second round at the end.

Before your ears dread him falling into intense cheesy synth heaven, Durojaiye will pull out a track like Possibilities, with the enticing ability of being in the same line-up as Roots Manuva, and not surprising that he he cites Portishead as The Day After precludes Never Forgotten one part of your brain is in the 90’s simultaneously recognising definite hip-hop, soul and funk themes, and from the moment you are confronted with all these things you can’t help but melt into his thought.


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