Fri. Oct. 22, 2021

Ralf GUM: In My City (Album Preview)

What a way Ralf GUM has gone… Since the early days he had a weekly residency at a club in the Würzburg Airport area (Germany) until now. Seeing him as one of the most critically acclaimed faces in the House Music scene, from his (new) South African home base where he dropped his luggage back in 2011…

Ralf GUM, Davide Maffei, Michael Fossati
Ralf GUM, Davide Maffei, Michael Fossati (WMC 2004)

“You give, you receive. You receive, you give…”. Some memorable words A Guy Called Gerald said to me one day, which Ralf has obviously made his too. Explaining the strong connection he has established with those he met along with time (including yours truly), and therefore his ever growing notoriety…

Unlike many of his alter egos, Ralf has never forgotten where he’s coming from. Nor the ones he met along the way and eventually collaborated with as a matter of fact. Remaining true to who he is: a simple man who has managed to remain accessible. A hard worker never refusing the effort. An artist fully dedicated to his fans, and a true friend, despite the time and distance. Such as one can realize referring to his connection with long time collaborator Phil Kullmann of the Raw Artistic Soul fame). As many signs which would find an echo on this new album – ‘In My City’ – on the footsteps of the memorable ‘Never Leaves You’ released back in 2012…

“I intentionally put the skyline of Johannesburg on the cover as a tribute. South Africa is the most vibrant dance nation I know globally”, he states on the press release. “I am grateful to be a part of its heartbeat. And also feel that I spiritually and musically live in a place which I can really call home. I am… In My City!”

‘In My City’ no surprisingly displays a whole range of African vibes. This, with the delicacy that would be for much on the progressive recognition of our man throughout the expression of his innerside. Therefore resulting in a collection of vibrant and meaningful compositions such as the title cut, alongside local legend Hugh Masekela. ‘A Brighter Dream’ featuring Kafele Bandele. But also the subtly Mzansi House fueled ‘The Pap’ enlightened by the presence of Monique Bingham. The latter being be for much on the success of ‘Take Me To My Love’ two years before. Not to mention ‘Free (Is All I Wanna Be)’ alongside Seattle-based upcoming songstress Portia Monique. A cut we consider as one of the singles of the year here on iDMW.

Elsewhere, there’s the brilliant ‘Bi ,Na Ba N’Jo’ featuring Dele Sosimi on that High-Life Jazz tip which would preceed the arrival of Afro-Beat. The deep’N mellow ‘Love Core’ featuring KB renowned for her collabs with Osunlade. A cut sounding like a serious contender in perspective of a single release (remember where you’ve heard this first!). Also definitely worth both the mention and listen, the presence of French singer Jocelyn Mathieu confirming his undeniable talent on the enlightening ‘Our Love Is A Star’. As the one of Brit-Soul icon Omar Lye-Fook on the jazzy ‘Love Core’.

All in all, a package that displays versatility with a lot of freshness. And, in the meantime, the sign of an obvious balance which GUM has obviously found as a man. A long time friend speaking of which we’re given the translation as a musician, composer and producer as shown on the aptly titled ending cut -‘The Best Thing’ – featuring new comer Lee Bling

Download from Traxsource.

Spotlight: Ralf GUM: In My City (Album Preview) (GoGo Music)

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