Feature

Meet Refuge: the teen expats bringing rock straight back with a ferocious talent

What do you get when you throw together a gang of mid-teens with a collective love for ’70s rock ‘n’ roll? Refuge, apparently.  

Comprised of 6 expat teens based in Nairobi, the band is rejuvenating the roots of classic rock with their assailing youth, and it goes to show that there’s still a whole lot of scope left for this beloved genre.

They want their music to become a literal place of refuge (hence the name) where listeners can escape the supposedly superficial music that saturates the current industry. It’s not often that a group of musicians as young as these guys (aged 13 – 16) are already so charged at refusing these commercial trends, but they’ve got a firm hold over their style – something that even the most popular musicians of today often struggle to get right – and it’s pretty exciting. 

Their debut album Haven For A Heavy Soul has already made it to the top of the East African rock charts and they’ve already hit the stages of international festivals like Bautz Music (Germany) all testament to their ferocious will. 

Tracks like “A Brighter Day” and “Gone Astray” are packed full of crazy guitar shredding, while the beautiful instrumentals of “Tathagata’s Scream” bring an unlikely tenderness to the record. They’ve even got a tact for the heavier commercials (“Only Time”), ultimately running a versatile debut for a new, hopeful generation. Watch these kids.