Ambient soundscapes of Afro Sensei in his New LP The Joy Fantastique

It’s been a busy 2019 for Afro Sensei. The Louisiana-based singer-songwriter-producer has spent the last six months dropping singles and videos from his recently released second album The Joy Fantastique. The album's first single "When I Fall," dropped on Valentine's Day. A mid tempo meditation on emotional vulnerability, the song’s video, helmed by Alexandria-based director Aijalon Alxndr, drew on Yoruba mythology to depict a tale of personal transformation.
In that video, I start off as a character who’s emotionally shut down,” Sensei explains. He's an Ice King basically. Then after having his consciousness raised by Shango and Oshun--the god of male sexuality and the goddess of love--he emerges with new knowledge of self. Ain’t love grand;)?
The second single and the album's title track "The Joy Fantastique" dropped in March. A bass-heavy banger inspired by 90's house and iconic disco divas like Sylvester, the song has become a fan favorite.  Teaming up again with director Aijalon Alxndr, Sensei wanted to depict an ethereal, sensual world when it came time to shoot the song's music video.
The Joy Fantastique' is all about the delirious, head-over-heels-all-in-my-feels time of when you first fall for someone. You can't wait to see them, you're all over each other...sending your love down," he says with a mischievous smile, referring to the song's tongue-in-cheek lyrics. "So when it came time to do the video, I wanted something bold and colorful and afrofuturistic. And with it being a dance song, I wanted it to have a house party/club vibe as well.
Choreographer James Michael Boynton created the video's steps, a mix of hip hop, voguing and traditional African dance. While performance took precedence in the clip, which currently has more than 7,500 views, African mythology was still an influence.
I'm channeling Osumare, a deity who's referred to as both 'he' and 'she'" Afro Sensei explains. "Osumare, at least to my understanding, represents male and female energy, and as a black gay man that really resonated with me. I think most people are a combination of male and female traits. That's what I try to convey in my own persona.
Osumare was also the inspiration for the album's photoshoot. Shot by photographer Jesse Butler, a.k.a. The Weird Rabbit, the images evoke the power, majesty and mystery of the deity known as The Rainbow Serpent
The album's third single, the hypnotic deep house cut “Overflow”, continued the hedonistic lyrical themes of its predecessor. However, the album's fourth release, the anthemic "Push Pull," marked a shift in subject matter.
Push Pull” is about the shadow side of relationships,” Sensei explains. “You know conflict, resentment, jealousy...all the fun stuff! The dysfunctional habits a couple can fall in and stay in if they’re not careful.
The Joy Fantastique is a concept album set to pounding electronic beats, ambient soundscapes and lush melodies. The 10-song collection traces the arc of a relationship through infatuation to conflict to late-night reconciliation to every complicated emotion in between. The songs themselves can stand alone as vignettes or snapshots of certain moments in a relationship, But they also fit into a larger, overall story, the ebbs and flows of a long-term relationship.
Being onstage and having all eyes--or i-Phones-- on me is still a new experience," Sensei admits. "But one of my goals with this album is to really put myself out there and establish myself as a complete artist. And being a performer is part of that.
Becoming a complete artist has been the goal since Afro Sensei, born Kevin Clarkston, released his debut EP Bougie Beats in 2014. A remix EP followed in 2015, before the release of 2016's deep house and garage-influenced After Hours. The trap electronic EP Let The Beat Breathe dropped in 2018. "Everything I've done so far has led to this point," Sensei says of his previous releases. "Now with 'The Joy Fantastique' I feel like I'm moving on to the next stage. It's exciting."

Though he was featured in recently released Lifoti's January/February 2020 issue 11, you can check it from below link's for your country:

No comments