From deep within the sonic landscape of the cosmos, come the Shaolin Afronauts with their unique brand of interstellar futurist afro-soul. Drawing on a diverse array of musical and other worldly influences the Shaolin Afronauts began their quest in late 2008 when their dynamic live performances and unique stage presence garnered a cult following in Australia, and earned them praise from around world.
Originally conceived as a side project for members of The Transatlantics the Afronauts have quickly grown into one of the most exciting bands in the Australia, captivating listeners with their fully instrumental original Afrobeat sound. Core to the ethos of the band is the free expression of improvisation but with this comes a deep commitment to incorporating the authentic sound of Afrobeat in the tradition of the great artists of the 1960’s and 70’s. Though there is something refreshing and original about the Afronauts, their music could be described as somewhere in between the heavy Afrobeat of Fela Kuti and the Ethio-Jazz of Mulatu Astake.
Signed to UK label Freestyle records in 2010 their debut release Flight of the Ancients, released in 2011 saw the group nominated for an ARIA and Limelight award as well as critically acclaimed performances at WOMADelaide and the Adelaide festival of the Arts. In 2012 the Shaolin Afronauts released their second album Quest under Capricorn. Their sophomore release saw the group expanded from an band of 10 to an ensemble of 18 musicians. Interpreting new works covering the emotional and spiritual territory of West African, Ethiopian and avant-garde jazz. The result was a deeper spiritual and musical journey across mystical intergalactic landscapes fuelled by the fire and spirit of legendary musical creatives including free jazz pioneers Sun Ra and the Art Ensemble of Chicago.
In late 2013 the band recorded their third album Follow the path. The new double album showcases both sides of the groups unique personality with two records packaged as one album. The first album sees the band return to their roots with a heavy dose of West African Afro-Funk. The second album is more introspective and can be viewed as an evolution on the concept from their 2013 release Quest Under Capricorn. The album is due for release on Freestyle records in June 2014.
Facebook Fan Page / https://www.facebook.com/TheShaolinAfronauts