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By Seb Wheeler
Blacksea Não Maya are a three piece who release music via Lisbon’s Príncipe record label.
The imprint specialises in bringing together artists who are based in the city and has been responsible for introducing key DJs like Marfox, Nigga Fox and Firmeza.
But Príncipe is now bringing through a new wave of young guns who all want to take the upbeat, frenetic and raw sound that the label is associated with to the next level. Among them are Nidia Minaj and DJ Lilocox as well as Blacksea Não Maya – brothers DJ Noronha and DJ Kolt, 21 and 22 years old respectively, and their friend DJ Perigoso, 17.
They all live in the Cucena neighbourhood of Lisbon and, as you might guess from their ages, they’re still at school, with the exception of Noronha, who has just finished his studies and is now concentrating solely on music. They began making music as a group in 2009 and linked up with Príncipe in 2012, joining the label’s bustling ranks of fresh talent. They’ve individually put out tracks on the 2013 EP ‘Piquenos DJs Do Guetto’ and their collective work as Blacksea Não Maya can be found on SoundCloud, where a flurry of uploads showcases their style, which draws influence from batucada, batida and tarraxinha.
“We dream of being world famous, recognised by our work, and we know that to attain our goals we have a long journey ahead of us that will demand full dedication and effort from our side,” Kolt tells us over email. That journey begins with ‘Afro’, Blacksea Não Maya’s contribution to ‘Cargaa 1′, the first of three EP compilations featuring Lisbon artists that are being released on Warp. Plaintive strings and bubblin’ percussion define the track, which sounds like the Lisbon equivalent of one of the more emotional Ruff Sqwad instrumentals. And it sticks out because it veers away from the fierce energy of the rest of the EP, which also features the group’s peers from the city’s scene.
“As I see it, Lisbon right now shows its cultural diversity through music,” Kolt says. “For us that is also a way to let off stress, as music sets us free and makes us go beyond, the imagination [of it] takes over our bodies. It would be great if we could live every day on the festive ambience of Lisbon.” Hot nights, hundreds of people spilling out from bars into the streets of the Bairro Alto, the charged monthly parties that Príncipe has started throwing; these are some of the things that adds to that ambience and which feeds directly into the work of Blacksea Não Maya, who feed directly into one of the most exciting dance music movements going.