congress / people

Zun Zun Egui

Date and place of start: 2006, Bristol, UK

Place: Bristol, UK

Theme: music

ECC Participation: artist

photo: Oliver Marler

Zun Zun Egui is a multicultural collective, founded by artists hailing from Asia, Europe and Africa; their music is a curious mix of alternative rock and ethnic sounds. The group’s singer, Kushal Gaya, came to Britain from Mauritius; the keyboardist/singer Yoshino Shigihara comes from Kyoto; the bassist, Luke Mosee and drummer Matt Johns are both Brits. These diverse characters were brought together by their fascination with African rhythms. The band’s name is a testament to their collective energy -- in Japanese, "zun zun" means going forward really quick, and "egui" means really weird.

“People call our music ‘tropical thrash.’ I have no idea what that means, but it’s fun.”

Even though they have released only two EPs, “Bal La Poussiere” (2009) and “Kass A La Senn” (2011), the band has garnered notoriety, mainly on the Internet. It has been said that their sound was influenced by the post-punk traditions of the Talking Heads and rich musical history of Bristol, that gave rise to the likes of The Pop Group and trip-hop royalty Massive Attack. The band has also been caught up in the rediscovery of afropop and afrobeat by Western artists. But the true strength of the group lies in the unbelievably dynamic live shows. Kushal Gaya is the charismatic frontman singing in Mauritian Creole, while Yoshino Shigihara provides the specially designed, psychedelic visuals accompanying the live shows.

The group has played in almost every European country and has also appeared at the 2010 SXSW festival in Texas. They were they supporting act during the UK tour of the legendary Dutch band, The Ex. The release of their first LP is scheduled for 2011.