LV: "Sebenza (f/ Okmalumkoolkat)"


By George Bass | 18 July 2012

When LV announced a “South London meets South Africa” album, bass music fans held their breath. At best, they might get a dubstep record with accents lifted from Blood Diamond; at worst, a solo Paul Simon outing with klaxons. Luckily the UK trio have delivered neither, taking their cues from the country’s kwaito music and fitting jagged beats and keyboards around it. Anyone ready to sneer at the premise should know the title means “work,” which this track certainly does.

With local MC Okmalumkoolkat on vocals, “Sebenza” is a tale of whose catchiness has been turned up to chart-bothering levels. 8-bit chords and keyboard patches overlap with broken beats, Okmalumkoolkat’s KwaZulu-Natal accent replacing the traditional garage Croydon. “Sebenza / Only rest in December,” he drawls, gently making the point we’re all too busy and all model our lifestyles after gnats. He spits from the centre of some mind-blowing production: slinky, sharp, and juggling bright synths like a deranged disco lighting technician. “The grabbing hands / Grab all they can,” sings the man in the small purple specs, LV prodding and poking him to create a pearl of UK funky by way of Orange Farm Township.