Music, much like film or literature, has the power to move you to another space or time. Be it a memory of a place or moment with a friend, the beauty of music is that it can reflect your mood. Emotions and thoughts are mirrored back to you in the form of harmony, rhythm, melody and lyric. That’s why it has been a fundamental part of human life for thousands of years, all over the world. Not long after fire, the wheel, there would have been tune.
Simon Green, a.k.a – Bonobo, allows his listeners to glimpse at different cultures and parts of the world that many of us have only seen in films or read about in books. Cleverly using melodic scales or rhythms to denote a particular genre specific to a continent, you can almost picture the scene where the song is coming from; a South American Latino dance, or a tranquil East Asian garden. Jazz, latin, garage and dance all mingle harmoniously as they rub shoulders.
Bonobo then mixes it all up with contemporary beats and instruments to take the listener to a strange, dream-type world where Japanese Kimono women stand next to the edge of the Amazon rainforest in an urban, inner-city landscape. At least in my mind, anyway.
Sometimes we want music to reflect how we see the world and for it to try and explain what makes us angry, sad or happy. The gritty realism and social-commentary of The Jam may be poetry to some and nonsense for others (“Waking up at six am on a cool warm morning/opening the windows and breathing in petrol”).
And sometimes we want music to allow us to escape. Escape from the stresses or troubles of life to another place. Seeing Bonobo live for the first time must be a surprise for most people who have listened to his music. How will he recreate all these weird and wonderful sounds on stage? Who will be playing what?
Delightfully, it’s seamless and entertaining. Green hops from bass guitar to laptop (where many of his own created sounds are used as samples) and is surrounded by a full live band and singers. I won’t give too much away for those of you who would like to see Bonobo (and to stop this sounding like an advert!).
Ultimately, for me, I love to travel and if time and money was endless I would be a full-time tourist, visiting states, nations, republics and kingdoms. Following Simon Green on Instagram, you get to see the beautiful places where he plays his music. In a way it’s too real for me. I’d rather sit back, close my eyes and let the music take me there…
Emotions and thoughts are mirrored back to you in the form of harmony, rhythm, melody and lyric