Okzharp & Manthe Ribane – Closer Apart (Hyperdub)


Okzharp is Gervase Gordon, better known for his past as a member of LV, one of the first acts to sign with the renowned Hyperdub label. On this new project he teamed with a vocalist, artist and dancer Manthe Ribane and also a film maker Chris Saunders. All of them come from South Africa, though Okzharp is nowadays based in London. Manthe Ribane was a dancer and performer for Die Antwoord and her present is getting better and better.

Closer Apart, their first work together, is an experimental approach that goes in deep in all the possibilities of bass music, with some extra flavours added that turn the release into something a bit more exotic. Sometimes slow-paced and experimental, like on ‘Wake U Blue’, ‘Why U In My Way’ or ‘Zagga’, and also with some oriental influences. The processed vocals on ‘Never Thought’ and our first pick from the album ‘Never Say never’ turn them into a magnificent demonstration of tones and colours. ‘Blue Tigers’ and ‘Time Machine’ are also some favourites of us here, due to their interesting percussive elements, the lounge feel, the shifts, the trippiness, the textures and their stretched ways of landscaping emotions, particularly on ‘Time Machine’.

‘Tide’ became the best place for Manthe Ribane’s voice to shine, and it has many influences, from R’n’B to Soul. The closing on ‘Treasure Erasure’ is also an essential piece, full of motion, oneiric and demonstrating Okzharp’s skills in production. We think of this duo as a very interesting new project on Hyperdub, and can already imagine some amazing soundtracks coming from them in the future.


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