Rose Robinson’s Tigerbalm project is a continent-crossing, globe-trotting, concern. The music drawing inspiration and instrumentation from the well-travelled Rose’s trips around the world. On her new album, International Love Affair – released this week on Ubiquity – tropical marimba, mysterious Middle Eastern woodwinds, boss Brazilian berimbau variations, and authentic afro-disco keys, are all mixed together in a cosmic pop pot. Choppy highlife guitar is filtered through NYC`s Mudd Club and CBGB`s, adding more than just a touch of the Talking Heads and Tom Tom Club. The nods to mid-80s Italo, and late-80s house mean that, though a little darker in tone, the results run in parallel with Faze Action’s collaborations with Zeke Manyika. The vocals are sung, scatted, rapped, and multilingual, with parts sung in English and Portuguese. A couple of the tunes also feature a sexy, sultry, Germanic growl, somewhere between Saada Bonaire and Nico. Cocktail d`Amore is a pounding, percussive tribute to the Berlin-based party of the same name – a late night mating ritual – while La Brisa makes like Olatunji’s Jin-Go-Lo-Bah meets Cultural Vibe’s Ma Foom Bey. Its constantly shifting dynamic, you could imagine being a huge hit at David Mancuso’s Loft. Here, The Insider. has Rose reveal a few of the secret weapons in her DJ box.
Words & selections by Rose “Tigerbalm” Robinson.
Waiheke (Alma Negra Remix)
I’ve been playing this all summer on roof tops and clubs. Being remixed by Alma Negra was a dream come true, as I’m obsessed with their music.
Elado – Baila
A new Elado edit – hypnotic and groovy – and out now on Razor-N-Tape!
Disco Halal – Hamathil (Red Axes Edit)
An obscure and sexy track. I’ve been playing this for years!
Pascal Latour – Lague Yo (Boulo Edit)
A tropical / afro dance tune that I love to play. Very sunny and happy. Released on Soundway Records.
Quim Manuel O Espirito Santo – Eme Lelu (Adam Port Edit)
I play this in lots at Afro / Latin venues. Mexican vibes. It’s a great beach club or sunset track too. I love Adam Port’s remixes.
Tigerbalm – Kete (Mang Dynasty Remix)
This my new single remixed by Bill Brewster & Ray Mang, with a big tribal percussion solo. It’s over 7 minutes long so you can sneak to the bar for a cocktail.
Oscar Sulley & The Uhuru Dance Band – Bukom Mashie (JKriv Rework)
An absolutely killer dance-floor track. Bright and colourful, with a sprinkle of afro dance / tropical. Gets everyone going…
Aristidez – Nada Nada (Simple Symmetry ‘What Happens After Death’ Remix)
Mysterious Eastern vibes!
Ettika – Ettika (from CHEBRAN: French Boogie Vol2)
I love to play this. A French boogie track with lashings of attitude.
Swinging Stars O Dominica – Las Mal Parle
One of the essentials in my vinyl sets. It brings out a silliness in everyone.
Nickodemus – Back From Africa (Derek Sessions Remix)
I feel like this can be played almost any place. Sexy, moody and tribal.
Tigerbalm’s International Love Affair is out now, on Ubiquity.