Kamaal Williams has been teasing us with a taste of a few tracks from his new album, Wu Hen, which will finally land this Friday through Black Focus. As if we needed any more reasons to be excited for this release, the multi-talented musician has just shared a new single, ‘Mr Wu’. Take a listen below.
In other related news, Kamaal Williams is hosting a live stream fundraiser performance this Thursday at 6pm UK time with Shabaka Hutchings, Alina Bzhezhinska and Lauren Faithall, with all proceeds being donated to The Stephen Lawrence Trust.
Wu Hen, the much anticipated new album from Kamaal Williams aka Henry Wu arrives later this month. The South London’s multi-talented musician had already shared the exhilarating ‘One More Time’, and ahead of the release on July 24th through Black Focus, he is enticing us again with new single ‘Hold On’, featuring Lauren Faith on guest vocals. Take a listen below.
Kamaal Williams aka Henry Wu had promised new music later this year, following the release of his improvised live album, Live At Dekmantel, back in February and now news of a new record have emerged. The South London’s multi-talented musician, one of finest jazz musicians on the UK jazz scene for a few years now, will release his new album, Wu Hen, on July 24th through Black Focus. With groove at the centre again, the album incorporates celestial jazz, funk, rap and R&B, as the press release describes, “reinforced with the beat-heavy attitude of grime, jungle, house and garage – a self-styled fusion Kamaal describes as ‘Wu Funk’”.
The man himself had this to say about the album’s themes:
“This is a revolution of the mind. A spiritual rebellion. To reach new heights requires separating ourselves from the material world and finding power in what’s intangible. That’s what music and art is for – whether it’s a primitive emotion or something deep, you feel it. And there’s a subliminal element that resonates throughout my work. If you’re painting, it’s what you’re feeling as you’re painting. And the person looking at that artwork or listening to that music, they can feel it too, because it’s sincere.”
Wu Hen saw Williams enlist the help of Greg Paul (of Kalayst Collective) on drums, Rick Leon James on bass, Quinn Mason on saxophone and Alina Bzhezhinska on harp, and it also features Miguel-Atwood Ferguson on strings.
Ahead of its release, we can already hear ‘One More Time’, serving as the first exhilarating single. Take a listen below.
Two years on from the release of The Return, which was one of our 15 Album Picks of the Year, Kamaal Williams aka Henry Wu is teasing the release of new music later this year. Preceding it, Williams has shared a new live album, Live At Dekmantel, which was recorded last summer at Dekmantel Festival in Amsterdam. Mainly the fruit of an improvised set, across its nine tracks, and as the press release describes, “dramatic sonics – high octane underground funk that fuses the spiritual with the dancefloor – complete with the atmosphere, markings and space that only live performance supplies – offer an introduction to a typical Kamaal Williams show.”
Along with the news, Williams has shared new track ‘3 Yourself’ and an accompanying video featuring original footage shot in Hong Kong during last year’s protests, as well as archival footage and photography. Tom J Bennett directs. Watch it now.
Kamaal Williams aka Henry Wu released The Return last year, the first album under his own name and one of our Picks of 2018. The record was followed up in December with a 12-inch release, ‘New Heights (Visions of Aisha Malik) / Snitches Brew’, and its first track has now been paired up with an accompanying film. Williams had this to say about it:
“2019 is all about making movies; Bruce Lee was a huge inspiration growing up because he was the first Chinese guy on the big screen. I feel like music and martial arts have the same flow of energy and are respective art forms. So why not bring Wu Funk and Kung Fu together?”
The film was directed by Greg Barnes and stars Chris Tang and Jayson Wynters. Here it is.