South Africa is Burning: Holy Spoeks

Spoek Mathambo

Spoek Mathambo

To call Spoek Mathambo colorful is an understatement, Mathombo’s a bag of skittles in a world full of marshmallows! If you haven’t heard about South Africa’s hottest MC cum designer cum DJ, you’d better recognize.

In South Africa’s Electro scene, you can’t so much as nod your head without catching sight or sound of Spoek Mathambo, the Sowetan Prince of Pop.

Mathombo has a hand in just about every hot electro group coming out of South Africa. He’s one half of the 80s rap party machine Playdoe, the dirty, sexy, cool-as-f*ck MC driving Sweat.X‘s electro mayhem and on top of that, also collaborating with Richard III in their funky Moleke Mbembe project.

I first heard Spoek on Sweat.X’s amazing “Cuckoo” Mini-Mixtape from early 2007, his rhymes, swagger and wit blew me away. I mean, you can listen about some dread-locked cartoon rapping about “Ladycops” or instead follow Spoek as he goes from “Soweto to the Mall to the Louvre” and commenting on everything from “Bulimic bitches wasting my money” to “Jewish Princesses” while hanging out backstage at his favorite designer’s runway show.

Spoek is the poster child of (to use his term) the Afrofuturists, a diverse group who defy definition and categorization (so forgive me for doing exactly that) – a new brand of Africans whose identities and influences go beyond race, social background and geographical borders and incorporate everything from Alexander McQueen, to raunchy ’90s rap and all that dirty, blippy electro you kids are so fond of.

Welcome to the Afrofuture.


Check out Spoek’s HIVIP DEZEMBA LIAZONZ MIX for a taste of what he’s doing and hit up his myspace for more music and tour dates with Sweat.X.

Also, check out Kaos Blanc’s interview with Moleke Mbembe (Spoek and Richard III’s project) that I liberally plagiarized.


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