The Winachi Tribe have risen in a relatively short space of time. From humble beginnings as the UK’s North West Electro Funk underdogs…to collaborating with a large impressive cast of legendary names from the world of music and film (collaborators including Tommy Flanagan, Danny Saber, Howie B & Keith Allen to name but a few).
Antony Egerton, Winachi Tribe co-founder, writes about one of his musical loves for us; French musical duo, Cassius. A band that have themselves worked with many musical luminaries including Hot Chip, Pharrel Williams and OneRepublic, amongst others.
It would have been the latter part of the 90’s when Cassius broke onto the airwaves and night clubs across Europe as apart of the French Touch invasion along with other artists like St Germain, Etienne De Crecy, Stardust and Daft Punk (to name a few).
Combining filtered funk and soul samples with house beats and percussive grooves creating an instant hit with the youth and the dance floors too. But the first time I would have heard them would have been under another name, enter La Funk Mob.
In my formative years I was a hip hop head at heart but my likeness for anything and everything had me splitting myself between many a musical genre but it was a sound I loved, the sound of chopped and looped musical phrases aka record sampling.
The producers that fired up their SP1200, MPC60 and S950’s and raided their parents record collections. and combined together these sampled elements to created a new and unique rhythmical soundscapes, But it wasn’t just the beats, breaks or instruments but the atmospherics between the notes and rivers of reverb that blended creating a feeling of warmth that could harmonises inside you which would transcend you to a multi layered dimension, this Frankenstein’s monster of when digital and analogue came together spawned to create new musical genres.
In the early to mid 90’s many sub genres of hip hops came to life; trip hop, nu jazz and turntablism that showcased the downtempo side to music that kept those Buddha heads nodding through the haze of smoke from bedrooms to clubs.
One of the forerunners of this musical frontier was the British label Mo Wax. I remember flicking through records at a friends house and seeing a memorable logo and took the record out; that record would be La Funk Mob’s Ravers Suck Our Sound.
Unbeknown to myself the musical partnership of Philippe Cerboneschi and Hubert Blanc-Francard better know has Zdar and Boombass would stay with me from that moment upon to this day whether it be as a listener of their music or has a student of their production skills.
Cassius’ influence on me musically is more notable to myself these days rather than subconsciously whether it be marrying heavy funk guitars with disco beats or sub chaining something to a kick. Zdar and Boombass themselves went on to be world renowned remixers, dance producers and DJ’s and releasing 5 albums plus E.P.s and working with legendary names of music.
Sadly, two days before the release of their final album; Dreems; Zdar died in a tragic accident where he fell from the building in which he lived in bringing a premature end to Cassius.
As the world still mourns the lost of Zdar their musically legacy remains strong with big names in dance music crediting them has their influence and their music still playing on the radio and dance floors across the world.
Cassius will never be forgotten and their music will live on. There’ll be another kid out there picking up those records keeping the legacy alive and influencing another generation.
Rest In Paradise Zdar…Cassius in the house!
Many thanks to Antony and The Winachi Tribe for sharing their love of the music of Cassius. The world is a little less funky without Zdar in it.
Check out The Winachi Tribe’s latest single, Funky But Chic. If you have any frame of reference for Cassius, you’ll hear their influence shining through it.
The single was a collaboration with Italian manufacturer of football boots, clothing and leisure footwear, Pantofola d’Oro.
Read more from the Why I Love archive here. You’ll find contributions from Fairport Convention, Maz O’Connor, InMe, Winterfylleth and many more.