Bonobo – True Master of Downtempo

This post is dedicated to man, who should have deserved to be on this blog way earlier than many other performers on the Lane. The roots of the multi-talent Simon Green, aka. Bonobo, go way back to the year 1999 when his debut album “Animal Magic” hit the market – a pioneer of the downtempo genre was born. I remember his songs to be different, it was nothing that I’ve heard before. His tunes are claimed to be a mix of electronica, jazz and trip hop but honestly if you listen to his songs he deserves to be his very on genre his own.

Bonobo could early be found on compilations like Café del Mar or Hotel Costes – two labels that always guaranteed quality sound. It was of no surprise that his follow-up records “Dial M for Monkey” (2003) and “Days to Come” (2006) didn’t set the bar any lower. His two recent creations “Black Sand” (2010) and “the North Borders” (2013) finally strengthen his very own unique sound and make Bonobo a trailblazer of downtempo and ultimately also of his label Ninja Tune.

Picking songs to present you guys has never been that difficult. Starting in a chronological order I will have to go with “Terrapin” first. Terrapin a 14-year-old song, which is still so contemporary, so gentle and innocent.

From the Remixes and B Sides “Dismantling Frank” – one of the most undervalued song of Bonobo, which increases its value the longer it plays.

From the 2006 record “Days to come” it will have to be two songs: “Nightlite” with the lovely voice of Bajka as well as “Recurring” which is heart-tearing beautiful. I remember while listening to “Nightlite” in a Korean teahouse when I falling in love while trying to suppress my feelings. I guess it was “Recurring” eventually giving me the strength to really come clean.

Now, 2010 comes strong, the whole records actually feels like rebirth. “We could forever” and “Kiara” clearly both stunners – the  melodic “Black Sands” however also deserves a mentioning.

Aaaaand to finally put an end to this post. From the 2012 Album “the North Borders”: “Cirrus” a song that feels like closing the loop and “Antenna” again making a start for hopefully another 14 years of great sound!