Fresh off a sensational appearance at Snarky Puppy’s Ground Up Festival, Underground System brings their female-fronted brand of global dance music to National Sawdust. Coming from a foundation of traditional afrobeat, Underground System has built a national reputation around an astonishing stage show that compels crowds to move with unbridled verve.
About the Artist
UNDERGROUND SYSTEM is a quintessential New York City band.
A convergence of musical and cultural influences, the unstoppable female-fronted group of neo-afrobeat deconstructionists have cultivated a sound as inimitable as its members.
Owing their foundations to traditional afrobeat (and named after a Fela Kuti song), the band has built a national reputation around a seamlessly executed stage show, astonishing wherever they go, and compelling crowds to move with unbridled verve. Robbing american “afrobeat” of its derivative formalism, Underground System continues to reinvent their brand of global
dance music, remaining a force determined to recreate, redefine, and reconstruct.
The band has released two single/EPs and several remix records on Ropeadope and Hell Yeah! (Italy), receiving airplay on the BBC, WNYC (Soundcheck), KCRW (Los Angeles) and WPFW (DC) and press coverage from blogs such as Afropunk, Okayafrica, Afropop Worldwide, The Village Voice, Test Pressing, Timeout, and others. In demand with large scale cultural institutions as well as festivals and club nights, notable 2017 performances include Central Park SummerStage w/ Seun Kuti & Roy Ayers, Bowery Ballroom (NYC) w/ !!! (chk chk chk), Chicago World Music Festival, and National Sawdust w/ Tigue and Innov Gnawa.
2017 also marked the completion of the band’s first full length studio album. Departing from the extended forms typically associated with their live performances and stylistic roots, this unsigned body of work epitomizes the band’s growth and showcases their uniquely New York flair. Hints of afrobeat, no wave, world, electronic, contemporary classical, disco, house, and genre defying elements combine tightly to reflect a self-aware, edgy, and cohesive statement not currently being made by any other band.