Supernatural Love

Posted on in Art + Soul by Lloyd Barde


Ready, set, here we go! Some super summer time music on the best world music album this year. Sidestepper began in the mid-90s as the studio project of Richard Blair, making dancefloor tunes that mixed the hard and heavy emerging London drum-and-bass sound with Latin sounds and breaks, doing with Latin music what bands like Massive Attack were doing with reggae, soul, and funk. Sidestepper is acknowledged as the original progenitor of electro-cumbia, and Supernatural Love marks a new chapter in their story. Supernatural Love is organic, potent, rhythmic, and irresistibly danceable—replacing electro beats with hand drums and traditional shakers, sticks, and flutes.

On Peter Gabriel’s Real World label, Supernatural Love mixes slinky, cheerful melodies against infectious percussion. The musical influences range from cumbia to gospel and soca, recorded in the laidback barrio of La Candelaria in Bogota, Colombia. This music flows like water, the fluidity of Blair’s tasteful production and electronic sound-bending creating a dreamy, captivating magic.

“This album tracks how all Caribbean music is part of the same family—from Colombia to New Orleans, there’s an Anglo-Latin feel to the groove, and songs in both Spanish and English, mixing melodies from both traditions. There’s a strong indigenous influence, and the way the songs are put together comes from the timeless use of melody and rhythm that’s been making dance music well before the 20th century. There is a lot of joy in the record, both in melody and the lyrics, which are consciously radiant and uplifting throughout the album,” explains Blair.

Supernatural Love is a feel-good album with hints of soul, gospel, California sunshine, and Latin boogaloo. It tells of higher planes, spiritual paths, and love that comes around, and around, and around. . . .


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