Artist info


Roots, Rock

Sounds like

Afro Celt Sound System, cat empire, Shooglenifty

band members

Peter Ella - guitars, mandolin, fiddle Dave Martin - fiddle, mandolin, ukulele, didge, Andree Baudet - saxophones, keyboard, Tony Hillier - guitar, percussion Will Kepa - bass Nigel Pegrum - drums


world, folk, Jazz


Kamerunga, from tropical northeast Australia, has redefined and reinvigorated Australian folk, blending original composition with tradition and elements of world music, jazz, classical, rock and reggae to create a vivid new fusion. The band’s second album, Worlds Kaleid, continues the exhilarating journey that began with its 2008 debut album. The Push garnered rave reviews, an ARIA nomination for Best World Music album and earned Kamerunga a place at some of Australia’s major festivals, including the Byron Bay Bluesfest, National Folk Festival, Port Fairy Folk Festival, Woodford Folk Festival and Fairbridge Festival, and an invitation to perform at the 2011 Rainforest World Music Festival in Borneo, an event featuring bands from more than 20 countries. Recorded at the Cairns studio of Kamerunga’s drummer and dual ARIA-winning producer Nigel Pegrum (former member of UK folk-rock pioneers and chart-toppers Steeleye Span) and launched at the 2012 Port Fairy and National Folk Festivals, Worlds Kaleid features stellar guest contributions from the Cat Empire’s trumpeter Harry James Angus, oud maestro Joseph Tawadros, slide guitar master Jeff Lang and The Bushwackers’ legendary lagerphone player Dobe Newton, who are among the finest players of their respective instruments in Australia. The original compositions include Burke’s Lament, a poignant song based on a letter that the ill-fated explorer Robert O’Hara Burke wrote in 1860 on the day before he died at Cooper’s Creek in Australia’s “red heart”, and The Cameleers, an instrumental tribute to the Afghan camel herders who helped open up the Australian outback in the 19th century. The album also includes a paean to Seisia, a beautiful part of far north Queensland, situated on the tip of Cape York Peninsula on the cusp of the Torres Strait. Fannie Bay recognises another part of Australia’s “Top End” and an infamous 19th century Darwin gaol. Queensland Whalers, Ryebuck!, Lazy Harry’s and Lime Juice Tub salute other aspects of Australian history. Worlds Kaleid is already garnering great reviews. Leading Australian singer-songwriter Shane Howard wrote: “Kamerunga’s new album is one of the more interesting albums to come out of Australia for a long time in the Folk/World Music spectrum. It's inventive, bold, and shines with brave and dazzling musicianship. It surprises. At times, it sounds like influences from Yes and Madness colliding with Australian bush ballads. At times jazz, at times jigs and reels. It rocks, it folks, it jazzes and gypsies it's way into your head and I can't get it out. It's a great record.” In its 4-star review, the Sydney Morning Herald commented: "Part of the album’s appeal, apart from its very obvious exuberance, is its sensitive and intelligent use of virtuoso musicians ... Worlds Kaleid is a fine example of innovative musical cross-fertilisation." In another 4-star rating, the Weekend Australian said: "The term world music is often misused as a catch-all for anything that sounds vaguely exotic or unfamiliar to Western ears, but it's a tempting label for the organic product of well structured dalliances between boisterous Australian folk and the infectious rhythms of a veritable multicultural melange." Leading UK world music magazine Songlines, which also gave the CD 4 stars, pointed out: "What makes Kamerunga’s arrangements unusual is that their sprightly jigs are interwoven with creative time changes, Latin-jazz touches and Middle-Eastern instrumentation." The Cairns Post gave Worlds Kaleid 5 stars and made it their CD of the week: "Kamerunga's second full-length album is one of the most innovative and creative takes on folk music ever to emerge from Australia ... it is essential listening for fans of both Australian and world music." CD available from Planet/MGM. Digitally from iTunes, Amazon, Big Pond. Video of the band performing 'Fannie Bay' at the CD launch in Cairns: Video of the band performing at the 2012 National Folk Festival: Video of the band performing at the 2011 Rainforest World Music Festival at Kuching in Borneo: