DESIRE MAREA’S NEW EP THE BADDIES OF ISANDLWANA – OUT 9 NOV
AN INFUSION OF SOUNDS THAT DOMINATE THE NIGHTLIFE IN SA,
A QUEST TO FIND HIMSELF IN HISTORY
WATCH THE VIDEO FOR NEW TRACK, ‘IF YOU KNOW’
DETAILS OF DEBUT UK TOUR – RARE EUROPEAN TOUR DATES
LATEST ALBUM ON THE ROMANCE OF BEING – OUT NOW
South Africa-based artist Desire Marea has today launched a new EP, The Baddies of Isandlwana, alongside the Triana Hernandez directed video for ‘If You Know’, a brand-new track described by Desire as Orchestral Gqom:
The new EP, out on 9 November 2023, will follow a rare tour that will see Desire and his band in the UK and Europe for the first time since an appearance at Grace Jones’ Meltdown festival in London. Kicking off in Leeds on 12 October, the tour continues through October and November with the first dates – including London’s Hoxton Hall – are on sale now and more to be confirmed for the UK and Europe.
DESIRE MAREA – UK AND EUROPEAN TOUR
12 Oct – Leeds (UK), Transform festival
13 Oct – Glasgow (UK), Take Me Somewhere festival, Tramway 4
14 Oct – Manchester (UK), Soup Kitchen
15 Oct – Newcastle (UK), Cobalt Studios
17 Oct – London (UK), Hoxton Hall
19 Oct – Brussels (BE), Beursschouwburg
20 Oct – Cologne (DE), Jaki
21 Oct – Munich (DE), Ritournelle Festival
22 Oct – Prague (CZ), Kasarna Karlin
23 Oct – Vienna (AT), Chelsea
26 Oct – Zurich (CH), Gessnerallee
28 Oct – Paris (UK), Le Petit Bain
30 Oct – Amsterdam (NL), Tolhuistin
1 Nov – Hamburg (DE), MS Stubnitz
2 Nov – Leipzig (DE), Institut für Zukunft
3 Nov – Berlin (DE), Volksbühne
4 Nov – Oslo (NO), The Oslo World Festival, The National Museum
The new EP is, Desire explains, “…a trio of songs inspired by my time living in Amandawe, KZN. It’s an infusion of sounds that dominate nightlife in SA such as Gqom, Amapiano and Afrobeat. The EP is symbolic of a time when I was trying to find myself in the world I occupied, which extended to my ongoing quest to find myself in history, hence the title.”
The title refers to the 1879 Battle of Isandlwana, the first major encounter in the Anglo-Zulu war which ended with a decisive victory for the Zulus, and it was this search for himself in history that prompted Desire to contemplate the lives of the LGBT+ soldiers in the Zulu army.
Talking about the video, director Triana Hernandez (Amyl & the Sniffers, Harvey Sutherland, KYE) explains, “‘If You Know’ is inspired by that long-gone but never forgotten 80s period when pop clips were serving flamboyant, abstract and melodramatic. Desire and I wanted to pay homage to this iconic period through a modern, queer and dreamcore lens. Our collaboration started via email (South Africa < > Melbourne) – Desire sent me the demo and my first note was that it has a majestic and hypnotic progression, so it was key for the clip to feel like an epic spell someone is putting you under. I went to nature to have semi-vivid naps whilst listening to the track on repeat, so most of the video is based on dream snippets that were induced whilst immersing myself into the song’s core themes – lustful love that turns passion into toxic devotion, lovers that get projected as angels and demons, forbidden fruit type of love. Once the concept was locked in Desire suggested we work with Jonty Knight, the most talented stylist I’ve ever worked with, and she brought the baddie feel into the clip, that savage-romantic feel, engaging lots of insanely avant-garde designers from Melbourne like Wackie Ju, Studio Fear and Maria de Lourdes.
Honestly, working with Desire Marea was a dream. He is one of the most visionary artists out there and we just did what we do best – dream, trust in the universe, serve the art.”
Desire Marea’s voice is a culmination of many South African voices; a mouthpiece for a choir of spirits and entities. In recent years, the Amandawe based artist trained as Sangoma, a traditional Nguni spiritual healer and on his second album, 2023’s On the Romance of Being – an Album of the Year So Far at The Quietus and a BBC 6Music New Music Fix – Desire finds himself immersed in the communal, ceremonial and healing qualities of music, sonically taking in post-gospel, spiritual jazz and the ancient music of the Nguni and Ndau peoples.
Listen to On the Romance of Being: https://mute.ffm.to/desire-otrob
Desire, his 2020 debut album, was one of Rough Trade’s Albums of the Year and BBC 6Music’s Album of the Day. The album traversed electronic genres in an introspective exploration of modern love and loss, drawing in fans from across the globe, including Grace Jones.
Before his solo career, Desire formed beloved Joburg collective FAKA with creative partner Fela Gucci. FAKA toured the world extensively; made their American debut scoring for Telfar at NYFW; achieved icon status by partnering with Versace to soundtrack their S/S 2019 menswear show and were featured in the Vogue World 100 and Dazed 100 lists.
The Baddies of Isandlwana tracklisting
The Only Way
Connect with Desire Marea