Green ZOO: Mozart’s Sister (CA) + Pierre Kwenders (CA)
Field of Love – Bio Mozart’s Sister - the solo project of Montreal’s Caila Thompson-Hannant - delights in making glittering, celebratory pop with an underlying strain of brittle, claustrophobic energy. Field of Love, her new album is the follow up to her 2014 critically acclaimed debut
She began writing for Field of Love in early 2015. Reliving her childhood love of 90’s dance pop she wanted to capture the spirit of that era of pop song. Colourful, cartoonish, goofy but always earnest. The aim was to make something that everyone was invited to and maintain only one rule: follow through on every musical desire she had. The critique could happen later once the fun was finished.
“I wrote Field of Love at a point when I truly did feel I was floating in a field of love. Once I got going the song-writing process happened very easily. As the songs came I realized: oh I really like these. There was a naivety to them and I felt like I could really cut loose when writing”.
Field of Love came out February 17th 2017 via Arbutus Records worldwide. Pierre Kwenders Afro-Canadian singer/songwriter Pierre Kwenders’ music is a response to a world that so often asks people who fit comfortably in multiple boxes to pick only one. Born in Kinshasa, Kwenders draws on his wide-ranging experience to make personal music with multiple points of entry, rather than paring it down to fit recognizable genres. He also wields it like a studio trick; he sings and raps in five languages, allowing him aesthetic options most artists cannot.
While Pierre’s music ranges from icy R&B to futuristic hip-hop, his style is rooted in Congolese rumba, the ubiquitous sound of The Democratic Republic of Congo. Like Kwenders, the genre’s identity transcends location: It began in the 1960’s as central
African artists’ take on Afro-Cuban rumba, which in turn grew out of African sounds imported to Cuba through the slave trade in the 17th century. But Pierre is as influenced by the sound of Congolese rumba as he is by the attitude of artists like the late Papa Wemba, who pushed the genre forward by finding ways to incorporate new ideas. Kwenders takes a similar approach to R&B and hip-hop. After a pair of well-received EP’s, Kwenders 2014 full-length Le Dernier Empereur Bantou established him as a torchbearer for a new wave of African artists. It was long-listed for the 2015 Polaris Prize, nominated for the 2015 Juno World Music Album of the year, and was nominated at the 2015 ADISQ for World Music Album of the Year. Its lead single, “Mardi Gras” earned the 2015 ADISQ for Video of the Year. He also played most Canadian festivals and toured Europe in support of the album.
With MAKANDA (At The End of Space, the Beginning of Time), his new full-length, Pierre looks to build on the success of his debut. Produced entirely by Fly Guy Dai (aka Tendai Maraire of Shabazz Palaces and Chimurenga Renaissance), Makanda finds Kwenders pivoting from Bantou's housey thump to something a little more rap centric.