Kampala's Nyege Nyege take over Refuge Worldwide

Six DJs from the collective will provide six straight hours of programming.

By Veronika Kailich

On Tuesday, 2nd November, Kampala-based festival, label and creative platform Nyege Nyege brought electronic sounds from across sub-Saharan Africa directly to Refuge Worldwide.

Founded in 2013 and hosting the Nyege Nyege Festival since 2015, Nyege Nyege illuminates the undercurrents of pan-African contemporary music and promotes a cross-breed of African and European underground dance sensibilities. “Dope underground music, that’s what we’re about. Just dope music,” says Arlen Dilsizian, co-founder of Nyege Nyege Tapes.

In the past decade, Uganda has birthed a growing number of homegrown electronic scenes influenced by traditional sounds such as plucked notes of the Ennanga harp and the fervent drumming of courting dances. 

Listen back:



Read a short description of each DJ below:

  • South Sudanese DJ and producer Turkana delivers leftfield African electronics, hard dance, and underground rhythms. 

  • Den Haag-based producer De Schuurman formed the late-2000s style of bubbling house in Holland’s Afro-diasporic club circuit. Expect squeaky vocals, rapid beats chopped with rap and R&B samples, and electro wobbles.

  • Berlin-based DJ and producer Ziúr, who played for us once before (listen here), is integral to Berlin’s music scene, combining rich sonic textures and left-field pop.

  • DJ Diaki is one of the originators of the Balani Show sound, entailing cut-up and looped balafon samples, crashing drums, and live remixes of djembe and folk instruments.  

  • Authentically Plastic’s sounds are characterized by subverting norms, influenced by quasi-electronic Northern Ugandan rhythms, early acid experiments, and Afro-futurism.

  • South African DJ and Producer Menzi is one of the early pioneers of Durban’s now world-famous Gqom scene, churning hard-synched techno and dark Gqom. 

Find out more about the collective, whose music is available digitally on Bandcamp. All profits are split evenly between the label and the artists.