For the past year, Ennis producer Ushmush has been pushing one of Ireland’s least predictable and most interesting musical fusions - a sound he has dubbed ‘Reggaelton’.
His bubbly, colourful, self-produced instrumentals are clearly indebted to Jamaican Dancehall and Puerto Rican Reggaetón. In his vocals he departs radically from these source materials and sings entirely as Gaeilge. The tonality and style of Sean-nós is audible under a thin veneer of autotuning. While such a juxtaposition could feel forced or tokenistic, the care with which he fuses disparate influences draws a heartfelt connection between the postcolonial, insular cultures on either side of the atlantic. His debut EP, self-released in April this year, was appropriately titled ‘Oileáin’.