Part of Los Angeles outlet Friends of Friends’ inaugural Singles Series, Lorenzo_BITW’s & Mina’s “Tombura” comes in as one of the shapeshifting label’s most dancefloor-oriented products yet, a blazing UK funky anthem primed for Carnival takeover and play well into the cold months. Cheekily utilizing steel drums for the tracks only melodic function, the Rome-based Lorenzo and the London-based Mina have a surprising hit on hand for their first collaboration, combining the former’s rhythmic ingenuity (see: “Drumz”, “Guava Swim” and “Congo Natty”) with the latter’s ear for addictive melodies, often found on her Boko Boko sessions on Radar Radio. “Tombura” is out now on FoF and can be bought here and here. Scroll through a quick Q&A with the artists and some rubiks cube talk.
Can you tell us about the creative process behind this collaboration and what strengths each of you brought to the table to make “Tombura” what it is?
MINA: Collaborating was always something we had wanted to do since we met in Leeds a few years ago. I came up with the idea for the track originally, and it reminded me of Lorenzo’s tunes, so I sent to him to see if he wanted to work on it with me together. The first time he sent it back to me it already sounded so good, it just took a few more times sent back and forth before it was finished, very straight-foward! I think I am stronger with melodic stuff and Lorenzo is better at the rhythmical side of things, we compliment each other very well!
LORENZO: Hannah sent me a rough idea of the track, i absolutely loved the melody at first and it something it captures my attention immediately. From there i kind of built some drums around it, and we keep exchanging versions of the track till it was done.
Any more collabs coming up, with eachother or otherwise?
MINA: Yeah, we definitely want to work on more stuff together given that its had such a positive reaction! I’m currently working on a track with a producer from London called Mokadem, and I’m off to Freetown, Sierra Leone in December to collaborate with local MCs and vocalists. I’m very excited, there is such a vast amount of raw talent in Freetown.
LORENZO: Me and Hannah will work on more music together soon and i am really excited about it. I am doing some music with Tsvi (part of the Nervous Horizion crew), who is another Italian producer and he’s really talented.
What’s been your best DJ moment in recent memory?
MINA: Playing in a banana plantation in Ghana! On a huge soundsystem in the jungle with about 500 people going nuts to afrobeats all night. Out to the Asa Baako crew, its an incredibly beautiful and unique festival!
LORENZO: Guesting on rinse.fm for Marcus Nasty back in June was an incredible moment as i always loved radio, and especially station like Rinse, plus the dj equipment was really good there, i wish i can always use that.
What are you guys passionate about outside of music?
MINA: Rubik’s cubes!
LORENZO: It’s mainly music for me, i used to take a lot of pictures and i still do. Photography has always intrigued me but it never as much as music does.
What else is in the pipeline for your individual projects like BITW and Boko! Boko!?
MINA: Boko! Boko! as a collective is continually growing and expanding, our next party is September 26th. Whilst it’s foremost about pushing forward thinking sounds from around the world, we are also using it as platform to encourage female participation within music. We just want to normalise the idea of men and women playing alongside one another, diversity makes a better party!
LORENZO: Got a couple of tracks inside some compilations, and a couple of remixes coming up. Plus I want to dj more in Italy, and i would like to start getting more recognition over here.