On Ninja Tune

Antibalas is the spirit of Afrobeat reincarnated as a hard-hitting collective of musicians in New York City. The group carries on the soul of Fela Anikulapo-Kuti, founder of the unique Afrobeat sound, which unites highlife, jazz, funk, and traditional African elements with unabashed political messages. Antibalas-which means "anti-bullets" or "bullet-proof"-shoots out monstrous horns and bass layered over polyrhythmic beats coupled with furious lyrics inciting insurrection in English, Yoruba, and Spanish.

Antibalas formed in 1998 from members of Desco Records' Soul Providers and the Daktaris. They were quickly joined by like-minded New York musicians active in the worlds of jazz, rock, improvised music, and traditional drumming from Cuba and Brazil. The union of Latinos, whites, African Americans, Africans, and Asian Americans is based in Brooklyn, NYC.

With fifteen band members, Antibalas-which is run as a collective-cannot easily be described in a traditional biography. The group's players come from such diverse professional, cultural, and personal backgrounds that only a spray of bullets can shed light on the foundation of this musical insurrection.

Antibalas Headlines

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Antibalas Afrobeat Gig Guide


  • "RT @gwlisner:STUDENT RUSH TIX for this Friday's show w/ @ZAPMAMAMUSIC & @Antibalas! $10 @ door (noon - 8) w/ GWID!"

    Mon Jan 26 23:15:46 2015
  • "RT @jgwoulla: Amayo just led us in group calisthenics in the grassy culvert of a Love's/Arby's truck stop. #tour #Antibalas #ZapMama"

    Mon Jan 26 20:50:24 2015
  • "RT @cl_atlantamusic: Brooklyn-based ensemble @Antibalas and Belgian-Congolese diva @ZAPMAMAMUSIC bring righteous African stylings to ATL: h…"

    Mon Jan 26 20:45:07 2015
  • "RT @radiofreejazz: #Atlanta Fans of #jazz exceptionally grooving free-funk & #afrobeat get out to see this! @Antibalas @Atlantalivejazz #V…"

    Mon Jan 26 20:44:58 2015
  • "♫ Tomorrow: Atlanta, GA - Jan 27 at Zap Mama & Antibalas: Variety Playhouse"

    Mon Jan 26 20:00:24 2015

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