HOTDLTABBBY, Kabeaushé’s second album and first for Monkeytown Records (their debut came through Ugandan tastemaker label Nyege Nyege), sees them stretching out in all directions: adding a scuzzy edge while leaning even further into pop instincts. Their maximalist use of vocal samples whips up an infectious storm, cribbing from everywhere but ultimately sounding like nothing but Kabeaushé.
Tracks often flit between two halves, relinquishing structure to hyperactivity in gleeful rebellion. ‘If It’s Flying, Fly!’ finds a choir of Kabeaushé in girl-group harmonies over an M.I.A.-like instrumental, until a needle-sharp guitar solo interrupts and brings things towards a glitchy cataclysm. Meanwhile, ‘Go With Gut’ starts out with a Pharrell-style four-beat intro and lets the occasionally grating falsetto go head-to-head with deeper (and easier to stomach) rap verses.
That same rhythmic drive is reflected in lyrics of survival – the title of ‘These Dishes Ain’t Gonna Do Themselves’ trivialises heartfelt words of resilience – but such delicate sentiments are often lost in the chaos. Not that that’s an issue: ‘High Spede’ is stuffed with hooks that twist up its strange lyrical narrative into something dangerously catchy.
The album leans into Kabeaushé’s technicolour idiosyncrasies in a way that never feels forced – think early Outkast beats at their most surreal. By track ten, you can feel the energy starting to wane for both listener and creator, but the musician wisely knows when to call time. A quick dip into the madcap world of Kabeaushé is always a treat, and HOTDLTABBBY is no different.