When it comes to classic drum & bass, there are few as legendary or enduring as Congo Natty. With a deep discography spanning five decades spanning seminal and timeless releases like Jungist, Under Mi Sensei, be wild, Kunta Kinte, Jah Sunshine, Its original and more, Congo Natty played a founding and hugely influential role in one of the most phenomenal and groundbreaking musical movements the UK has ever seen.
Now, following the announcement of his biggest work yet which has been teasing jungle anthems all summer long, jungle pioneer Congo Natty is finally releasing a highly anticipated album. Ancestor (Jungle Rootz)a gargantuan 32-track exploring jungle, D&B, reggae, jazz, hip-hop and beyond.
Already backed by 6Music, BBC Radio 1, Rinse FM, NTS and more, Congo Natty is going wild Ancestor (Jungle Rootz) for the world to cherish and a reminder of the genre’s ongoing, influential and versatile legacy. True to its name, the album is an ode to the origins of the genre that Congo Natty revolutionized in the UK and beyond, devoting each song to ruminations on the jungle’s intersection with identity and nationality. Reflecting on the genealogy of the genre, the track “Exodus 1:7” (feat. Fallie Nioke, Kaya Fyah, Marque Gilmore, Reggie Stepper, Orphy Robinson) opens with the statement “This is England style Reggae – jungle music” before to hypnotize with masterful layers of overlapping voice, percussion and spoken reflections. The listener is taken effortlessly on a journey to the poetic, uncluttered reflections of the woodwinds of the flute solo “Navaho Flute” (feat. Biscuit), an elegant preliminary initiation to a tour de force rich in diversity.
Despite its 32-track length, Congo Natty’s most in-depth project to date refuses to waste time or cut corners, recording just over 2 hours of music (plus a 2-hour continuous mix), retaining carefully the beloved elements of reggae and lively wind instruments present on tracks such as “Zanziba”, an artistic lollipop that shines with the heat of funk temptations and warbling dub riffs. Meanwhile, “Jungle Starliner” kicks it up a notch with thundering basslines hungry for a massive sound system. At its core, the whole album is hungry for expression, begging you to move your body with its awesome jungle calls.
Representing the global diaspora and giving people a voice on the new album, Congo Natty tells the most important story jungle music can tell while documenting the uprising and reflecting on the plight of humanity, culture and travel in 2022. He now turns to passing the torch to the producers he champions in the recent resurgence of jungle music.