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ÌFÉ playing at World Cafe Live in Philadelphia, PA. Photo: AL DÍA
ÌFÉ playing at World Cafe Live in Philadelphia, PA. Photo: AL DÍA

ÌFÉ plays Philly’s World Cafe Live following release of sophomore LP, ‘0000+0000’

The electronic music project ÌFÉ released their sophomore album earlier this month, and came to Philly on Nov. 16.

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On Tuesday, Nov 16, the electronic music project ÌFÉ took on World Cafe Live in Philly following the Nov. 5 release of their sophomore LP, 0000+0000.

The performance is part of their five-city tour celebrating the new album, a followup to ÌFÉ’s 2017 debut, IIII+IIII.

The LP’s title, 0000​+​0000 — pronounced “Yay-koon May-yee” — represents a “prophetic sign from the Ifá religious practice,” and heralds “the birth of night and a fearless embrace of death.”

The group’s latest record was introduced by singles “Fake Blood” and “Heart Full of Love,” the former being a major highlight during their live performance.

As for their song, “Tu Sabes K Si,” lead vocalist Otura Mun shared that the song “gives a nod to the many challenges we and others have faced. As we all struggle to realize our dreams while fighting through the setbacks, letdowns, critics, and naysayers."

Founded in Puerto Rico by New Orleans musician Otura Mun  — a vocalist, percussionist, and producer — ÌFÉ finds themselves at home during live performance. 

The group is self-described as a “futuristic live electronic music project blending elements of Afro-Cuban folklore and Yoruban religious music with the bass driven sounds of modern day Jamaican Dancehall, Trap and Afro-Beat.”

ÌFÉ soars during live performances, connecting with the audience through their expressive instrumentation and vocal effects utilized by Mun and backing vocalists.

Their performance at World Cafe Live was one of their first in two years following a kickoff show in New Orleans. 

Only a few songs into their set, the group asked for the lights to be dimmed, and for the audience to put lighters or cell phones in the air. 

The group also requested that the audience take the opportunity of their gathering to expel negativity.

Percussion was placed sincerely in the spotlight, with Mun and others playing, exemplifying it as the backbone to ÌFÉ’s complex yet contained rhythm. 

While Mun is the father and showrunner of ÌFÉ, he is not entirely alone. In addition to his live band, Mun doesn’t shy away from collaboration within ÌFÉ.

Mun wrote, performed and produced 0000+0000, but brought on some guests to lend their talents.

Guests include artists Lex, Robby The Lord, Saint Ezekiel, Herbie Hancock, Bill Summers, Lavoski, and The London Lucumi Choir. The album was mixed by engineer Stuart Sikes.

In performance, ÌFÉ played with Philadelphia’s Brad Broomfield, a percussionist and educator.

On 0000+0000, ÌFÉ brings forward what made IIII+IIII so unique while, championing bold new concepts pertaining to the current decade.

0000+0000 represents night and death, touching on the state of America as well as the planet. As the changing climate exhibits more noticeable effects by the year, ÌFÉ decides how best to deal with an end.

“In 0000+0000 the sun has set in the visible world. The night and the 'magical’ world has come to life. In many ways the record is saying the sun has set on Western world,” said Mun.

“It is the fear of it’s inevitable death that we must overcome if we hope to transcend and survive as human beings. Nothing lasts forever,” he continued.

ÌFÉ’s set at World Cafe Live was a thoroughly unique and energized performance, but their tour is not over yet.

They will play at Elsewhere in Brooklyn, NY, on Nov. 17, Bombyx in Northampton, MA, on Nov. 18, and Black Cat in Washington, D.C., on Nov. 19.

The group’s sophomore LP is available now through physical copies and a digital release.

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