The Glaswegian production duo Auntie Flo – made up of veteran house DJ Brian D’Souza and South African Esa Williams – have recently released their debut album ‘Future Rhythm Machine’ on the Huntleys and Palmers label. The album has been lauded by the likes of Ricardo Villalobos, Andrew Weatherall and Gilles Peterson for its lush take on percussive house that they themselves have termed ‘future afrobeat’. Through their popular ‘Highlife’ residency at The Sub Club Auntie Flo have carved out a style that sees them draw on the rhythmic percussive elements of African and Latin music, as well as their mutual love for Detroit techno and Chicago house, to produce their signature ‘Highlife’ sound.
As Brian himself says, the production of Auntie Flo tries to “look at the broader picture and trace ‘black music’ back fully to it’s orgins in Africa. African rhythms have influenced music as diverse as samba, blues, jazz, soul and hip hop, amongst others. However rather than looking retrospectively at these genres – which have all entered mainstream consciousness from humble beginnings – we pay more attention to the what’s happening currently and artists who are looking to the future.”
‘Future Rhythm Machine’ certainly builds on this mission statement, and their track Futurismo is one of the most subtle and rewarding. Kicking off with a strong percussive groove, it gradually builds into tightly picked strings and an almost melancholic piano line that speaks as much to afrobeat as it does to the UK bass sound.
‘Future Rhythm Machine’ is out now on Huntleys & Palmers