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MHYSA's First Solo EP on NON Is a Powerful Opus of Resistance

"Made for Black women FIRST by a Black woman in the USA w/love for the folk + the resistance."

by Alexander Iadarola
Feb 16 2016, 6:05pm

Photo courtesy of the label

Philadelphia-based artist, MHYSA, has shared their first solo EP on NON Records, the label and collective founded by London-based Nkisi, Virginia-based producer Chino Amobi, and Cape Town's ANGEL-HO. HIVEMIND follows up MHYSA's contribution to the NON WORLDWIDE COMPILATION VOLUME 1, a jarring, Ex Machina-referencing collaboration with Amobi called "power cuts." MHYSA is one of the alter-egos of the multi-disciplinary E. Jane, who is also known for their work as one half of the duo SCRAAATCH, a performance and sound duo who are also affiliated with Houston artist Rabit's label Halcyon Veil.

Today, MHYSA delivered HIVEMIND with the following message in the body of its Bandcamp release: "Made for Black Women FIRST by a Black Woman in the USA with love for the folk and the resistance," adding, "NON TODAY. NON TOMORROW. NON FOREVER." Its tracks feature aggressive and glitchy industrial samples on top of stark, reverberating beats, with co-production credits going to fellow Philly artist DJ Haram and SCRAAATCH compatriot plus_c. In the lyrics to tracks like "Jezebel" and "Feel No Pain"—which are both Sade covers—the artist explores themes of resistance to racial and gendered oppression.

The EP also features a No Doubt cover, while its track "No Ordinary Love" is inspired by Sade's band's song of the same name. MHYSA explained their approach on Hivemind to THUMP via email, saying "The EP is all covers because I wanted to be a conduit for experiences and reinterpret material I already understood, or thought i understood, because singing a song teaches you something different about the lyrics." Check it out below and revisit Rabit's remix of "power cuts" here.

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