The long-awaited musical project is here. After a powerhouse entry into the local and international music scenes, Mx Blouse is finally ready to release Elementality: a one of a kind, genre-defying full-length album. With a single already playlisted by Apple Music and Spotify, and some rave reviews, the album is set to delight their loyal audience and bring the wonderful world of neo-kwaito to a new set of fans.
Elementality is the culmination of various electronic music influences, ranging from kwaito, to hip-hop, deep house, and other electronic music genres. With a central focus on love, the album is a laid back dance effort, which uses sometimes otherworldly sound to tackle infatuation, frustration, joy, and everything else that comes with being in love. Talking about the inspiration for the project, Mx Blouse explains,
“I’ve so far tried to honour our musical past by leaning heavily on what is recognisable as the kwaito sound, but this time, I just wanted to make an album that is fun, but honest and deep-house inclined. I love to party, and I tend to enjoy dance music that is soulful. That’s what I was going for. I didn’t really know this was going to be an album, the only thing I was conscious about after my EP came out is that I wanted to make music about the desire to connect and finding love, but it had to be fit for the dancefloor.”
While the album has an experimental quality to it, Mx Blouse has also relied on the presence and production of some old and new collaborators. As they explain, the album takes influence from all over South Africa:
“The album was recorded over a few months late last year with sessions in Durban where I worked with producers MISSU and Chad Whitby, while working remotely with Cape Town-based Bakai. I then spent a day recording with Mediterranean Wavelength label boss Micro Pluto, who produced several tracks on the album and helped out on ‘Yesterday’s Nostalgia” produced by Eye-On Feather. In spite of the wide range of sounds and production talent, the album maintains a cohesive sonic direction.”
But this is not just a victory for music – it’s a win for the culture too. The Johannesburg-based Mx Blouse has toured everywhere from Germany to Switzerland, bringing local South African music to world stages. Moreover, as a non-binary artist, the inimitable Mx Blouse has entered the mainstream with force and flair, shattering stereotypes – all while offering a really good time.
Their EP RE:Mx, released in 2019, exceeded expectations both locally and internationally. COLORS Studio featured the provocative single Is’phukuphuku, calling it “socially critical and relevant”, while NATAAL praised the “slick raps, hot hooks and tracks that make you want to rewind over and over”. The musician has also received critical acclaim from Sunday Times, OkayAfrica, City Press and other culture spaces.
“This is music you can clean your house to, dance to at the club, listen to on your morning run, and I think it’s perfect for long drives”, says Mx Blouse.
The album drops July 24 and will be available on all streaming platforms. Pre-orders can be made from July 5.