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STREAM: Damon Albarn’s Congo Benefit Album


In July, Damon Albarn went to the Democratic Republic of Congo with Gorillaz cohort Dan “The Automator” Nakamura, XL label chief Richard Russell, and others to record an album with more than 50 local musicians. Hear the entire set below, via The Hype Machine.

Completed in only five days of work in capital Kinshasa, the album by Albarn’s DRC Music project will raise money for international aid organization Oxfam. Kinshasa One Two arrives digitally on October 4 and physically on November 8.

The streaming tracks include the previously unveiled African pop futurism of “Hallo,” featuring Congolese performers Tout Puissant Mukalo and Nelly Liyemge. That song is a decent indication of what appears on the album, which generally hovers somewhere between the sci-fi synths of Gorillaz and the on-location feel of Albarn’s Mali Music project.

“It all came from a long-term commitment that i made to Oxfam,” Albarn told BBC Radio 4 in a recent interview. “In a way, really, they started the whole kind of ball rolling for me by inviting me to go to Mali. And I didn’t want to go as a sort of ambassador … I wanted to feel something and get involved with people who I thought might be like-minded.” DRC Music‘s official site has more information.