South Sudan’s “King of Music” Gordon Koang has announced the follow-up to his Australian Music Prize-nominated 2020 album Unity. Community is set to arrive on Friday, 11th November via Melbourne not-for-profit label Music in Exile, and will mark Koang’s second album of original material since emigrating to Australia in 2012.
Community features eight tracks recorded in Melbourne by Koang with collaborators such as Traffik Island’s Zak Olsen, David “Daff” Gravolin of ORB, Beans’ Jack Kong and Jesse Williams of Leah Senior’s band and the Girlatones. To coincide with the announcement, Koang has shared the album’s vibrant, joyous first single, ‘Kwai Obala’. Check that out below.
Listen to Gordon Koang’s ‘Kwai Obala’
Gordon Koang was born in the Nile Valley and in the ’90s began writing and performing music in the streets of Juba in South Sudan. He released 10 albums and toured internationally, but was forced to flee his home country amid civil war. He sought asylum in Australia in 2012 with his cousin and musical collaborator, Paul Biel.
Koang received permanent residency in Australia in 2019 and after linking up with Music in Exile – who describe their mission as “increasing access to resources and building professional networks for artists from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds” – he released Unity in 2020. Since releasing Unity, Koang has shared remixes of album tracks by Sleep D and Andras. He also released two standalone singles last year: ‘Coronavirus’ and ‘Disco’.