SOMA is a collaboration between Zimbabwe born rapper Shumba Maasai and UK producer Hermes, long time friends and members of Plus TRBE Recordings collective. Shumba aims to enhance the experience of the African diaspora in the UK whilst Hermes creates a sonically immersive experience inspired by the Industrial North of England. Their combining has spawned a 4 track project TOTKO II, the follow up to its 2016 predecessor TOTKO which peaked at #14 on Spotify’s UK Viral Top 50 and amassed over 100K plays.
Lead single ‘Rudeboi’ is a warning to Black Africans looking to migrate to Europe. Through distinct regional pronunciation and provincial poetry, Shumba explains that the “Good Life” is a delusion and the reality is a cold, superficial existence. Field recordings from both continents have been used to create searing drum parts, and atop the Burial inspired basslines these literal sounds perfectly articulate the juxtaposing cultures.
TOTKO II retains the same sonic and emotional sensibilities of its predecessor, but dives even deeper, hitting more directly and focusing on genuine experiences. Presenting them through a unique but accessible musical lens.
During the period between releases, Shumba has launched Ancestral Futures a concept that uses the engagement of the 5 senses to promote progressive African artists. Hermes honed his craft, expanding his sound design palette within film and advertising via Plus TRBE Productions and recently was on production duties for UK rapper Shaybos Daily Duppy.
Digital Track List