Sampha | Photo by Jesse Crankston

Sampha Returns with ‘Spirit 2.0’, His First Single in Six Years

Sampha has returned with his first single in over six years, ‘Spirit 2.0’. It was created alongside Yussef Dayes, El Guincho and Owen Pallett, and features additional vocals courtesy of Yaeji and Lisa-Kaindé Diaz of French duo Ibeyi. In a statement about the song, Sampha said ‘Spirit 2.0’ is “about the importance of connection to both myself and others, and the beauty and harsh realities of just existing.”

“It’s about acknowledging those moments when you need help – that requires real strength. I hope people can enjoy that feeling of someone being there for you, even if that person doesn’t have the answers. Just calling someone up without overthinking… letting go and just dancing… wanting to see past the mundanity of things and appreciating the magic of it all, from birds nests to spaceships.”

Sampha – ‘Spirit 2.0’

Sampha’s debut album, Process, arrived back in 2017. The album was co-produced by Sampha alongside Scottish producer Rodaidh McDonald. It was met with widespread acclaim, winning the 2017 Mercury Prize.

Prior to ‘Spirit 2.0’, Sampha hadn’t released any new music of his own since Process arrived, but his vocals have appeared on a slew of other artists’ tracks over the last half-decade. In 2020, he featured on ‘Soldiers’, a track from rapper Headie One and producer Fred Again‘s collaborative GANG mixtape. The same year, he featured on ActressKarma & Desire cut ‘Walking Flames’.

Last year, he delivered standout performances on Kendrick Lamar‘s Mr. Morale & the Big Steppers track ‘Father Time’, plus ‘Sampha’s Plea’ on Stormzy‘s third studio album, This Is What I Mean. Other artists Sampha has collaborated with in recent years include Drake, Solange, Alicia Keys, SBTRKT, serpentwithfeet and Mount Kimbie.

According to a press release today, ‘Spirit 2.0’ is the first song to be shared from the sessions for Sampha’s “highly anticipated second album,” which he has been “firmly focused on the creation of” in recent years “alongside a close circle of friends, peers and collaborators.”

Further Reading

Sampha – ‘Process’

Sampha – Sydney Opera House, 27/05/17

Kendrick Lamar Brings a Trio of ‘Mr. Morale’ Cuts to ‘Saturday Night Live’

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