Art by Tu Guaina

Good morning, good evening, or good tea time depending on where you are and what time you’re reading this. Today I wish to address men with earpieces. You know who I’m talking about, the guys that are working as security guards at nightclubs. Whether they’re at the door doing their impressive important job of checking id’s or standing up against the walls inside looking at girls butts. They put the earpiece in and it’s like a transformation (only apparent to them) from average guy that works out at the gym too much into protector of the president. You’re not protecting anyone except horny drunk clubbers and being paid next to nothing for it. I don’t hate them personally I just hate the transformation. I worked at clubs most of my adult life and when you turn the lights on (I was there a lot in the daytime wiring lighting rigs in the ceiling rafters) it’s just a big empty room full of dust and occasional cleaning crews. Women with headsets collecting the cover at the door too, you’re not working at a super important fashion show.

On a different subject, live bands should never have an opinion on sound engineering. Last weekend I transformed a Mexican restaurant (where wealthy white people eat at to get the “authentic Mexican food experience”) into a live music venue. This reminded me why I love cumbia and punk rock and put the two in a similar category. The first band was the Mexican ska-punk band bent on rocking and having fun. Not a pout among them, no concerns, they just wanted to drink and tear it up, and they did. I really enjoyed their set and honestly didn’t want them to stop. Then came the monsters, this live hip-hop, rock, whatever fusion band. The only people I got along with were the DJ (of course) and the bass player (of course) the rest of them were annoying. Requiring six microphones for six vocalists (always a bad sign), I set it all up and performed a successful sound check with all in agreement checking every angle from audience side to stage. Their entire set from three members I constantly received annoying requests to turn them up or too much treble or blah blah blah. It drove me crazy. Why be in a band when all you do is work with the engineer to get what you think is the perfect sound (three different opinions contradicting each other which makes it impossible). So I ignored them but still what’s the point of performing? Where’s the fun? I hated them and needed to vent about it so I chose an international blog for that vent.

Now that I’m done with all that nonsense let us begin the cumbia. A big project is nigh coming from DJ Broken Record. Last time he appeared here on Generation Bass with his Cumbiahtonical EP featuring remixes of Philip Glass, Moby and Clint Mansell. It was incredible and next generational stuff. Now he’s back with his sequel Cumbiahtonical Volume Two. I have listened to all of it and I really must be honest, I love it. It’s a perfect return to the cumbiahtonical sounds of the first volume but takes it all a bit further. It has a certain sense of humor. Among all the drama he purposely has inside cumbia jokes breaking up the tension. The EP will be released this Monday August 6th on NuCumbiaExperience.Com and reviewed by yours truly. Here I have a teaser mix to get the idea of what one can expect.

Rafael Aragon is the master with his celestial style. He comes back to SSC with this beautiful shamanistic cumbia dub. It’s a nice mix of electronics with a great synth bass line, dub delay and organic indigenous vocals and flutes. I must say this is one of my favorite songs I’ve heard this year.

A really bizarre cumbia comes from Changoramico this week. It’s a church organ that is out of tune with a heavy cumbia beat. This is symbolizes an aspect about cumbia that I admire bringing me back to my punk rock point earlier. It’s about just unapologetically laying it all out there for the sake of ‘why the hell not’. I love this.

Chile meets Mexico in this new remix of Chico Trujillo’s Loca by Yelram Selectah. I love this song originally and I think it’s awesome what Yelram did with it. He plays with it and messes it all up delightfully.

DJ Neber is at it again making dope stuff even doper with his hip hop editing. Here is El Pescador, I’ve already listened to it many times.

Along the same lines as DJ Neber is Stereo Reveulta with his funked up edit of La Cumbia Del Rio. It’s about time someone touched this song (unless I missed it).

I stumbled up some music I really dig and no nothing of the dude behind it (I’m too lazy to research. HEY I write a lot all week) but I really want to share it. I do know Beto Ibañez provides it and the productions are experimental and dope.

I don’t hear as much cumbia-step as I did last year but there are still productions coming out (I’m surprised I haven’t seen a ton of cumbia-trap yet. That’s a good thing in my book. Hey surprise me with a good one and I’ll change my tune). This one is really sick and it’s from Sonido Landero.

Oh the great remixes of Pernett’s Cumbia Continental keep coming in. This latest one is by Lesglobe and it is a really interesting remix. It definitely stands out on its own from the rest that I’ve heard. I like it very much because it keeps evolving as it goes on and ends in a really awesome place any synth-head would enjoy.

3ball rebajado sounds really cool to me. I love how it ends up when slowed down so much. Lapce Sonido Kastigador makes it happen with his mix.

Toy Selectah returns with an incredible raverton remix of Javier Estrada’s Morning Cumbia. It’s an intoxicating driving psychedelic beauty!

Cumbia In Motion is the SHIT! Electro cumbia at it’s dopest by truly Awesome DJ’s.

After that banger it brings the brain much pleasure to bring in the dub element. Sonik Groove is the culprit to do so. First with vocals by Prince Osito and then with the instrumental of Better Dan Dem for free downloads unless you’re feeling a bit charitable and buy them.

Kinky Electric Noise takes me way the funk back to my teenage days with his Legalize It remix. Peter Tosh was the stepping razor man and KEN delivers a respectful remix for us to chill to.

Dengue Dengue Dengue! comes back hitting hard with their cumbia edit of the Fugees How Many Mics. This is the jam so you better download it now!

ZZK Records is still the leader of the cumbia digital labels constantly putting out new great material. Earlier this week I had the pleasure of writing some press for Alto Guiso’s new EP, which I’ll repost here.

Also this week we saw yet another awesome EP released by the always incredible Terror Negro Records. This time it’s Deltatron at the helm with his EP El Que Abandona No Tiene Premio. I was fortunate to have it shared with me prior to its release. The EP is all free to download too. It’s just another example of the love behind the producers of nu cumbia. To download the whole EP go HERE.

Back up north Dj Rickk dropped his hip-hop edit of Fito Olivares’ classic (in these parts) La Cumbia De La Cobra making a nice tribute.

I came across this very cool session from Kzike GuacamayeroCumbiero, I think I found it due to KayGee. It is a really cool cumbia dub mix.

Last up I have this really sick mixtape by Relo. I’m on it but don’t let that sway your interest, it features really good productions from many others.

That’s it, I did my job, I love doing it, I brought you the cumbia!

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