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It’s been some time since Cape Town duo Stone Jets released new material. Since the band’s inception in 2013 Given Knanyane and Manfred Klose have powered with quiet grace through the local indie scene, a gradual rise aided by an ever-evolving sound which has placed them in a solid, although niche, bracket.
Their latest offering, “I Can’t Live Without You”, is a simple, acoustically-driven track, quietly steeped in sentimentality and deeply African influences. An easy guitar progression, backed by woody percussion opens the song, before Nkanyane’s falsetto vocals sweep into the picture. Their’s is a sound gearing towards that of their pioneering Afro-pop contemporaries, Hot Water and Holiday Murray.
Layered, choral backing vocals and a gently grooving melodic undercurrent lends a hardier African element to their sound than previously apparent. Lyrically simplistic, the focus is more geared toward the low tempo rhythm which dominates the track. Thematically it’s a love song, with nostalgia half-hidden beneath the easy energy of the song. “Remember, remember, remember” Nkanyane ‘s vocals echo with poignant reminiscence, as the song’s energy dips and swirls in and out of play.
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Listen to “I Can’t Live Without You” below.