Ibeyi, 'River' Naomi and Lisa-Kainde Diaz, the 19-year-old French-Cuban twins in the duo Ibeyi, offer an arresting but unsettling video for their song "River."

Ibeyi

YouTube

All Songs TV

Ibeyi, 'River'

The video for Ibeyi's song "River" is, frankly, more than a little unsettling. Twin sisters take turns staring flatly into the camera, singing expressionlessly, in between being repeatedly submerged underwater. Are we witnessing a baptism or a drowning? It's unclear. But the song is so darkly beautiful and beguiling that I've been watching it non-stop.

This emerging duo, whose name is pronounced "ee-bey-ee", is comprised of the 19-year-old, French-Cuban twin sisters Naomi and Lisa-Kainde Díaz. They're the daughters of the groundbreaking Cuban percussionist Miguel "Anga" Diaz, and they root their sound in the Yoruba traditions they inherited from their father. (Their band name actually means "twins" in Yoruba — and twins are both astoundingly common in West Africa and especially prized in Yoruba culture.) "River"'s bed is a deep percussion groove — Naomi plays the wooden-box cajón and the double-headed, hourglass-shaped batá — but the duo's voices float sweetly above the drums, edged with the faintest hint of metallic overtones. Though they're based in France, the Díaz sisters sing "River" mostly in English, before raising their voices up in the Yoruba language in a paean to Oshun, the Yoruba river orisha spirit and the patron deity of Cuba in the Afro-Caribbean Yoruba tradition. Ibeyi is brand-new to the scene (they are signed to the record label XL, the home of Vampire Weekend and Adele, with only a digital EP out now), but I can't wait to soak up more of their music.

[+] read more[-] less

More From All Songs TV

A still from Bad History Month's video for "A Warm Recollection." YouTube hide caption

toggle caption YouTube

Review

All Songs TV

Bad History Month's 'Warm Recollection' Of Love And Death

Songwriter Sean Bean says "A Warm Recollection," from the band's new album Dead And Loving It, is about "the high stakes of living life in the face of certain death."

A still from the video for "Not Coming Home" From the video hide caption

toggle caption From the video

With 'Not Coming Home,' ALA.NI Calls For Love In A Mad World

ALA.NI says it best: "LOVE IS LOVE IS LOVE IS LOVE.Take it where you can get it, cause lord knows we need as much of it right now in this mad, mad world." That's at the heart of "Not Coming Home."

Back To Top