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Martin Guttridge-Hewitt
16 June 2022, 15:03

NikNak announces new turntablism album inspired by Afrofuturism and Black spirituality, ‘Sankofa’

The Leeds-based DJ and producer is also embarking on a UK tour

NikNak Sankofa

NikNak has announced a new album, 'Sankofa',  which will be released on 1st July. 

Billed as an "immersive turntablism-produced" record, the Leeds-based artist's latest outing has a clear narrative thread. The release tells the story of a young Black woman's self-realisation and discovery of superpowers. The concept is a result of intense research into Afrofuturism, Black spirituality, comic book characters and faith. These themes were then combined with the artist's Oram Award-winning turntablism and production skills, incorporating deep melodic synth work, orchestral elements and field recordings into the experimental mix.

Speaking about the album's title, NikNak, who is one of DJ Mag's artists to watch for 2022, said: “Often symbolised by a bird looking back over its shoulder, Sankofa is a spiritual principle derived from the Akan people of Ghana; that one should remember the past to make positive progress in the future". The release was first created during her time on 2021's Sound Generator R&D programme in 2021. 

“Sankofa serves as a way for all Black womanhood within the diaspora and beyond to further accept and grow within themselves without apology, to not forget the power, mysticism and beauty that resides within and from their ancestors, whilst uniquely taking up as much space as possible," she continued. "Sankofa sends a message that Blackness and femininity are so much more than stereotypes often alluded to.” 

Listen to NikNak's recent track, 'Doubt', below.

Following the release, NikNak will embark on a UK tour, with performance and design aimed at exploring the album's themes, combining visual art, improvised DJ sets, and support from like loop musician Xana. Tickets are on sale now, with full dates below. In January, NikNak recorded a mix for DJ Mag's Radio 1 Dance residency — listen back here.

NikNak UK Album Tour Dates 2022

12th July — More Music, Morecambe 
13th July — Sheaf Street, Leeds 
14th July — Strange Brew, Bristol     
16th July — The Rose Hill, Brighton              
17th July — Hot Tin Café, Faversham    
18th July — Junction, Cambridge 

Photo credit: Sophie Jouvenaar