This is it. It’s officially June, festivals are popping off all over and the sun is (probably) out.
Two years ago, South African-born Amapiano was declared the sound of the summer and, honestly, it still is. Since its popularity first exploded across the globe, its influence has extended into a whole bunch of genres and subgenres, particularly here in the UK. DJ Modenads counts herself one of the SA sound’s growing legions of UK fans and she’s been blending it with all sorts of club music lately. As she puts it, “The vibe of Amapiano music, for me, is unmatched.”
For the latest edition in our Complex Sessions series, the multi-talented London creative turned in a mix that tapped into the sound of Amapiano in 2022, blending scene heavyweights like Major League DJz and Zinoleesky with Tiwa Savage, Wizkid, Burna Boy, Darkoo, and the Skepta remix of Pop Smoke’s “Welcome To The Party”.
Press play below and enjoy.
Tell us a bit about your selections in this mix.
The vibe of Amapiano music, for me, is unmatched. Coming into festival season, I had to base the mix around this sound, blending it with a bit of Afro and lightly infused with some drill. This mix should get your day started the right way!
What was the one track you absolutely had to include?
“Sungba Remix”. This song is going crazy around the world right now. As soon as the song drops, it’s a party-starter.
Any tracks that narrowly missed the cut?
“Wait For You” by Future, Tems and Drake. It’s my favourite song on Future’s new album, and I love Tems! It was just a little too mellow for this mix. “High” by Adekunle Gold and Davido was another one—I completely forgot to add this in while I was mixing [laughs].
What’s the first single or album you ever bought?
Destiny’s Child’s “Survivor”. I think I first ever heard this when I was really young, as my mum’s ringtone on her Nokia. When I got my first Walkman, the one you could put CDs in, this was definitely the first one I had.
What’s the last physical record you bought?
Probably Beyoncé album, four years back. I probably had every Beyoncé album and just anything related to her that ever came out [laughs]. There was a shift in how we were starting to consume music around these times; CDs were becoming not so useful to the average person, and downloading music was taking over fast.
What do you want to see happen musically over the next 12 months?
I’d actually love to see more dope female producers in the industry. Every other producer, when you think about it, is male—but why is that?
What trend or scene absolutely needs to die right now?
I once saw a response to a question like this, which read: “I wish I could better answer you, but I don’t give attention to things I’m not into." And I love that! Definitely my outlook on life.
1. Darkoo f/ Black Sherif - Always
2. Pop Smoke f/ Skepta - Welcome To The Party (Remix)
3. Small God, Black Sherif, Vic Mensa & Ivorian Doll - Holy f4k
4. Tiwa Savage - Koroba
5. Burna Boy f/ Wizkid - B.D’OR
6. Asake f/ Burna Boy - Sungba (Remix)
7. Amaarae f/ Kali Uchis & Moliy - Sad Girls Luv Money (Remix)
8. Focalistic f/ Davido & Virgo Deep - Ke Star (Remix)
9. Mellow, Sleazy & Felo Le Tee f/ DJ Maphorisa, Madumane & Young Stunna - Bopha
10. Bob Mabena f/ Cheez Beezy & Magesh - Doromongy
11. Kabza De Small f/ DJ Maphorisa & Ami Faku - Asibe Happy
12. Kabza De Small f/ DJ Maphorisa & Ami Faku - Abalele
13. Omah Lay f/ DJ Kush – Understand (Amapiano Edit)
14. Small God f/ Major League Djz & Guilty Bets - 2000
15. Busta 929 f/ Mzu M - Mmapula
16. Zinoleesky - Rocking
17. Pabi Cooper f/ Reece Madlisa, Busta 929 & Joocy - Isphithiphithi