EXCLUSIVE: Poetry And Music Outfit BBXO Kick Things Off With Stirring New Single “Hard Road To Travel”

BBXO, if you didn’t know, is the new collaborative project between Brixtonboogie founder Krisz Kreuzer and poet and spoken word artist Musa Okwonga—a politically-charged outlet for their combined art. Today, we're sharing their first single “Hard Road To Travel”, a combination of Kreuzer’s tried and tested history in blues music and Okwonga's uplifting and inspiring poetry. Naturally, comparisons to The Streets and even Faithless are going to come through thick and fast, but the level of socio-political understanding between the pair is immediately apparent.

On the subject of how the pair came together, Okwonga told TRENCH that “it started with a huge piece of luck. I had been in Berlin about a year, and was chatting to a friend of a friend at a house party. I mentioned to her that I was a poet, and that now and then I worked with music. On her request, I sent her one of my songs—and it turned out that she was a music lawyer, and a week later she asked if she could act as my publisher. She suggested that I meet with Krisz Kreuzer, a producer who her company had been representing for some time, and we talked for a few hours about everything really—politics, football, culture, you name it. And then he sent me some beats. They were incredible—this great blend of the old and the new, of blues, pop soul and electronica. I loved each of them, wrote to them at once, and in our first studio session we recorded five songs in two days. We ended up working together so well that we decided, instead of just collaborating on the odd song, to make it a fully-fledged project—hence the name of the group, BBXO, which is an abbreviation of our artist names. It’s just progressed from there, really.”

Okwonga went on to explain his reasons for combining music with his poetry: “It’s just happened naturally, but looking back, I’ve always been in environments which encouraged that. I have always loved a wide range of music, and I grew up around some of the best UK MCs of the time—Yungen and Doc Brown—and went to so many of the best hip-hop and singer-songwriter nights; Kung Fu in Camden, OneTaste in Balham. Over the years I found the confidence to start reading out some of the poems I had written, and then felt that working with music could help my writing—whether it be personal or political—reach a wider audience. And, let’s be honest, there is nothing like performing tunes that you love on stage.”

Take a look at the bold set of visuals below, which come courtesy of Lemia Monet (with photography by Eduardo Mattos), for a straight-to-the-point look at exactly what BBXO are capable of. The new single comes from the pair’s debut EP, which is due to drop later this year.

Posted on March 07, 2018