By David DacksAboriginal DJ collective A Tribe Called Red have mashed up First Nations imagery and sonics like no one before. What's truly noteworthy about them is how quickly they've achieved worldwide notoriety when so many popular aboriginal artists find themselves circumscribed by their cultural background.
DJ NDN & Bear Witness launched their wildly popular Electric Pow Wow DJ nights in Ottawa in 2008 and have become (with new addition DJ Shub) equal parts video artists and music makers. Their dubstep remix of Northern Cree's "Red Skin Girl" has been kicking around Soundcloud for months but is only now being released as the group's first official single.
"Dubstep was an automatic fit because powwow beats are faster than a lot of electronic music," says NDN. Up next are further script-flips of global sounds, he says. "We did a couple of soca tracks, and we've also had some reggae rhythms on a couple of tracks. We're exploring all of it right now."