Ifa y Xango is one of the most promising bands of a new generation of jazzmusicians. Already in the first year of the group's existence, they were recognized by national radio-hosts and professional music juries in Belgium. At the end of 2011 the band was awarded for winning that year's Jong Jazztalent Gent, which is organized by the Gent Jazz Festival. The competition's jury summarized the band's performance by saying that Ifa y Xango is "a band with great potential, of which we expect them to display this in the very near future". The release of their first recording 'Abraham' is the result of the music they performed these last years.
'Abraham' is a stream of music, with the different pieces forming one story, which is based on some of the works by Lars von Trier and the paintings of Pieter Brueghel and Jeroen Bosch. Just like the Danish director and the renaissance painters they use different characters and stories to create a single storyline, which is interpretable by the listener. All of this is done using techniques, developed by the seven composers in the band, to steer the music in a certain direction.
Ifa y Xango is comprised of Viktor Perdieus (tenorsaxophone), Filipe Nader (altosaxophone), Niels Van Heertum (euphonium), Seppe Gebruers (piano), Laurens Smet (double bass), Ruben Pensaert (drums and percussion), Sep Francois (percussion). These seven musicians found each other because of a shared interest in Latin-American and African music, which they use to create a blend of music which is entirely their own. Their bandname comes from two deities of cuban and brazilian religions. Ifa represents wisdom, while Xango is the god of lightning, fire and dance. These two aspects are represented in Ifa y Xango's music, which they hope speak to both the mind and the heart.
In the fall of 2012 and in 2013 Ifa y Xango will be performing in numerous clubs across Belgium. In november they will playing a Jazzlab tour in different culture houses in Flanders. In early 2013 Ifa y Xango will be presenting a project in the Bijloke focussing on certain aspects of microtonality in improvisation. More news about these performances will follow.