Dublin, County Dublin
Madu to date:
March 2012: The Dastan siblings are back in Kuala Lumpur. After the successful release and tour of their first album “From The Elders’ Yard” in Ireland and the UK in September last year, Madu are producing their new EP ‘Rocksteady’.
Always interested in the process and development of their sound, they have returned to Malaysia to hone 4 new tracks written in Dublin where they are based. With a bit of Malaysian sunshine to thaw them out after the cold Irish winter, the pair are motivated and working solidly on production, art work, distribution and all that goes into maintaining their independent progression.
The goal is to release this EP by May 2012. With an album released late last year and a single the year before that, putting out good sounds is clearly an important focus of the bass driven duo.
Salim has been busy in the studio, arranging and playing, there is no doubt, the sounds are solid. Madu appreciators are in for a few new frequencies to his repertoire of sounds!! Aminah has been waving the lyrical wand, singing some new soulful sounds while keeping busy organizing Madu home and abroad.
With the help of the Madu horn section ( Bob and Zoltan ) they have bright new melodic brass parts woven in to the mix. Collaboration with other familiar friends, Daniel Rostrup once again shines on keys, DJ Izem communicates some lovely bossa jazz licks on guitar, Lucy Sessions lends her lovely 1930’s vocal stylings to harmonies and the Dastan’s are excited that this material draws some new influences and is a slight departure from their first album affectionately coined by other music lovers as ‘Neo-Roots’ music.
It has been at least a decade since the brother and sister team began recording together, though the pair began exploring their separate musical interests much earlier.
Madu – A Review
This key Dublin-based band, fronted by dub and beats controller Salim and vocalist Aminah – play an infectious combination of sounds which steer away from typical dub soul or reggae arrangements. Their music is a combination of influences driven by bass heavy rhythms, vibrant melody and conscious lyrics.
Salim’s years as a producer with his strong affinity to reggae music and skills as an electronic composer are the basis on which he builds the unique Madu sound while Aminah's melodies drawn from jazz, blues, folk and roots add the element of soul. Think King Tubby meets Billie Holiday.
"Madu is the musical communication between my brother and I built on our different creative expressions", says Aminah. "The idea of collaborating together on an album occured in 2000 and life in all its ways brought us from that point to this".
From opening to closing track MADU connect well with audiences. Their positive and uplifting performances last year at Body and Soul festival saw a completely packed Casa Habana marquee soaking up the sounds.
Having played in Ireland, the UK and Malaysia from big festivals to small intimate venues, their sound is catching on, a style which has been formed by years playing, writing, producing and being influenced by much travel, absorbing the unique sounds and cultures of Asia, the Pacific and Europe.
Through their nomadic journeys and collaborations with artists such as Mexican duo Rodrigo y Gabriela, New Zealand’s Jetlag Johnson of Fat Freddy's Drop, Asia’s drum icon Lewis Pragasam and many more they arrived at the unique Madu sound.
"There was a particular time and place where we
found the right environment and tools to develop
the idea of an album", says Salim. "That was
when living at our auntie's house in Dublin and
it's the reason why we named the album From
the Elders' Yard. Paying respect to our elders is
also a concept that resonates with us."