Kenyan noise kings Duma make industrial grindcore like you’ve never heard it before

(Image credit: Press)

“We’ve got a question for you, Metal Hammer: where the fuck have you been, man?!” says Duma vocalist Martin Khanja (AKA Lord Spikeheart) with a laugh. He’s passionate about the depth and diversity of the Kenyan metal scene and frustrated that it’s all too often overlooked. “The scene in Kenya is fucking serious, all kinds of genres – metalcore, death metal, grindcore, but no one knows about it, bro!”

Martin spits, his words a machine-gun hail of enthusiasm, as fast as the hellacious breakcore of Duma’s self-titled debut, over which his screams herald a new era of evolution for Kenyan metal. It sees the band combining traditional percussive influences with black/death/grind/industrial/you-name-it to create one of the most uniquely intense records you’ll hear this year. 

Producer Sam Karugu, a much more laidback counterpoint to his effusive frontman, is quick to agree that evolution is what this genre-bending two-piece are all about. “I want to show the world that metal is here, that we love it and that we want to change it – we want to make future music out of metal.” 

Martin’s aspirations are equally far- sighted. “I want to unify all of us on the planet – all the diverse cultures; we’re all family. No racism, no bullshit, I want to unify through music. At a metal show, if someone falls in the pit, you pick them up – you’re one family. I love metal, it changed my life. Forget where you come from, we’re one humankind, mankind – that’s what’s up.” 

Duma’s self-titled debut album out now via Bandcamp