What can you say about a pairing of such legends? Jeff Mills, the inventor of the Detroit Techno sound, founder of Underground Resistance, pretty much a peerless originator in the evolution of warehouse music of the past 30+ years. And Tony Allen, Fela Kuti’s drummer in Africa 70 for over a decade and even now in his 70s as revered and in demand as ever he was.
Bringing these two goliaths together is like some kind of fantasy festival fixture and it’s hard to imagine a pairing of two more influential musicians. Mills evolved from DJ to revered producer and live performer with a major influence on developments in electronic music over 3 decades. Allen merged Nigerian Highlife, American jazz and funk and traditional Nigerian percussion to create a sound that drove Africa 70 into the stratosphere. As Fela Kuti said, “without Tony Allen, there would be no Afrobeat”, Brian Eno describing him as “”perhaps the greatest drummer who has ever lived.” He’s also previously collaborated with Detroit’s Theo Parrish and Berlin’s Moritz von Oswald so now playing with Jeff Mills seems like a perfectly natural transition.