We at Crammed are delighted to announce one of our boldest moves: we have started a long-term collaboration with one of the most exotic bands we've ever worked with: the amazingly hyperactive Think Of One, who come from Antwerp, i.e. from the other side of Belgium's ever tighter linguistic border…

Think Of One see themselves as musical explorers. They love nothing more than travelling to distant countries to record with Moroccan, Inuit, Congolese or Brazilian musicians: they generally make extended stays to work with local artists, live with them, try to learn some of their musical language, and end up exchanging and melting musical ideas into new forms, in which the basic Think Of One ingredients are moulded and blended in with extra-European elements. T.O.O. are among those rare bands who really put the idea of transculturalism into practice. UK magazine fRoots may have described them as "dyed in the wool musical magpies", the results of each of their collaborations is always more than the sum of its parts, a new musical object, original and always extremely joyful and festive.

As for these basic "T.O.O. ingredients", well, let's hear again what fRoots has to say: "A mix of kicking brass, punky energy, funky basslines, jazz experimentation and rhythms & vocals from just about everywhere… Strong Eastern European gypsy influences… jazz, reggae, a touch of Latin and African… Like Manu Chao, they have their own distinctive sound, but are able to create music built around openness and collaboration".

After having released no less than 7 albums (under 4 different aliases) in 5 years on their own tiny label — managing along the way to garner a devoted international fan base, and to earn a BBC Award for World Music (in the "Boundary Crossing" category)— and having toured in Europe, Japan and Brazil, Think Of One have now joined forces with Crammed to start a collaboration which promises to be very fruitful, both on the level of creative exchanges and in terms of exposing the band's music and message to a wider audience.

The first album spawned by this new collaboration is "Tráfico", written and prepared by T.O.O. during an extended stay in Recife, where they once again (like for "Chuva em Pó") worked closely with several musicians & vocalists from the Brazilian northeast, including 66-year old veteran singer Dona Cila do Côco, percussion wizard Carranca (Bonsucesso Samba Clube, Naná Vasconcelos), and vocalists/percussionists Cris Nolasco and Ganga Barreto.

"Tráfico" is a great introduction to the world of T.O.O. Many tracks are infused with rhythms from the Brazilian northeast (côco, maracatu, forró and more), yet this isn't an album of Brazilian music, it's a trip to Thinkofone-land, interspersed with strange keyboards, thundering horns, quirky call-and-response vocals in Portuguese and Flemish, a cavalo marinho rhythm (inspired by the traditional musical drama performed in the streets of Pernambuco towns by sugar-cane workers) which mutates into a neo-punk jam, strange stories hummed in Antwerp dialect, and some remarkable avant-jazz horn arrangements performed by a quasi-big band.

Produced by T.O.O. guitarist/vocalist/composer/arranger David Bovée and drummer/programmer Roel Poriau, the album's mixdown was entrusted to the hands of five different and equally-talented mixers, an Englishman, a Frenchman, a Brazilian and two Belgians (no, they weren't on the same plane with only one parachute): Chris Harrison (Morcheeba, Cibelle), Yann Arnaud (Air, Apollo Nove), Bert Van Roy (Vive La Fête), André Oliveira (Mundo Livre s/a) and Crammed's Vincent Kenis (Konono N°1, Taraf de Haïdouks, Zap Mama).

Think Of One are an exceptionally exciting live band, and they will be touring extensively to promote the release of "Tráfico".

Think Of One are
David Bovée : guitars, vocals, keyboards
Eric Morel : saxes
Roel Poriau : drums, programming, keyboards
Tobe Wouters : trombone, tuba
Jon Birdsong/ Bart Maris: trumpet, bugle
Tomas De Smet : bass, keyboards

More about T.O.O.

It's obvious that "Think Of One" is not just a band, it's also a way of life: taking their name from a Thelonious Monk track, T.O.O. began as a loose collective of up to 20 musicians living together in Antwerp. The band soon narrowed down to a line-up of six. They couldn't be bothered to wait for concert bookings to materialize, so they converted a truck into a mobile stage and started driving from town to town, turning city centres into parties... They still do that to this day: from time to time they transform into a brass band (with or without the famous truck) to go and perform their specific acoustic repertoire, which they call "NAFT" (Arabic for gasoline).

The very fact of recording and performing with Moroccan gnawa and houara musicians in a city like Antwerp (where inter-community tensions are acute) was highly symbolic, and didn't go unnoticed. The Morgen newspaper wrote: "this is what real world music should be: an allegory of hospitality and integration", while fRoots exclaimed: "it's like having an entire festival invade your living room. Their multicultural stance must be two fingers to all those nasty Flemish right-wingers".

The Think Of One back catalogue consists of 3 albums with the Marrakech Emballage Ensemble (several Moroccan vocalists and musicians who come from the Gnawa and Houara traditions), 2 albums as Naft, the Chuva em Pó project, and their debut project Juggernaut, which dates back to when they were listening to funk, Tom Waits, Steve Coleman and anything in between. Crammed will gradually be re-releasing a selection of these hard-to-find recordings.


01    ESSA MESA     
02    SAMBA BELGA     
03    TIRAR ONDA     
04    TRÁFICO    
05    TAHINA    
06    AAI    
07    MARIA CHEGOU     
08    FLOR D'ÁGUA     
12    TIRAR ONDA (Chorinho) feat. Água de beber


THINK OF ONE - Camping Shaâbi
Camping Shaâbi
THINK OF ONE - Trafico