Every week Sexxy Saturday Cumbia offers a spot to check out and download the newest tunes and discover new artists. But a look into the different ‘sound labs’ where the music is actually being put together is a whole different experience. Some artists produce their stuff completely electronically, but bands and live elements remain common, even when the digital influence is heavy.
When looking for some ‘artist at work’ vids, I stumbled upon this fantastic mini-doc (which I somehow missed last summer) that gives a great insight in the faces and the wider scene behind most of the tracks posted here weekly!
It’s always nice to see how production styles can become a central part of the identity of a music genre, like what happened with baile funk and the MPC or cumbia villera and the portable keyboard (that thing probably has a specific name..). This can happen when the instruments or images of the ‘artist at work’ get a prominent role in music videos. This one I found, produced by an exponent of the new generation of Argentinean ‘urban cumbia’ artists: Dj Yayo. It’s about a year old but his Youtube profile’s got a nice list of recent tracks in different styles, more than worth checking out!
I love seeing how different electronic instruments, production and sampling, live band elements, dj’ing, MC’ing etc. are all being blended together now into something new, and that cumbia is taking the lead in this vibrant movement!
Let’s start with the only EP release of this week, Orihuela M.S.S.‘s ‘Cumbia Sonidera Digital’, which appeared yesterday on Regional Label. Orihuela combines the slow and melodic sound of Mexico City’s vintage-sonidera with sharp leads and basses. The EP contains 4 tracks. The first one is mostly bass-oriented and the third has got some nice, dreamy pads going on. The other two lean most heavily to the ‘classical sonidera’, which is always a great, memory-evoking sound to listen to. Grab the free EP here!
Two productions, also deserve some extra attention because they are both examples of the endless genre-crossing creativity and musical talent in digital cumbia. The first example comes from the tropical-deep specialist Manduka. ‘Burdeos San Juan’ is his new meditative cumbia track that will take you on a cosmic trip of hypnotising percussion, dubbed tango samples and mysterious electronic sounds. Take some time to listen to these wonderful 6:18 minutes of music!
The second example is the new, extended tune from Qechuaboi, the perfect continuation of his tracks that I posted last week. ‘Wuat’da-F’ is an almost 8 minutes long, uptempo fusion of funky bass-guitar, electric guitar and deep-pad loops, techhouse grooves and cumbia percussion that again carries the tag ‘live’. I hope to be able to see this endlessly creative sound-artist live at work one day!
Thanks to DjUMB, I discovered this new artist: El Pinche Chule, based in Jalisco, Mexico. The first of the four diverse tracks on his page was released only a month ago.. the other three are all from this week! The first one is a powerful uptempo cumbia remix of the Mexican hiphop song Akwid by No Hay Manera.
The second is the perfect banger for a transnational bass set, an energetic cumbification of Die Antwoord’s ‘Cookie Thumper’!
‘Santa Rosa’, in turn, is a great example of the kind of nu-cumbia that has always been the very heart of the kind of groove that Sexxy Saturday Cumbia and Generation Bass stands for: fusing tropical percussion with experimental electronic sounds just as easily as with heavy guitar riffs.
I was very happy when I found out that Rogelio Huerta released a new production this week. I try to keep up with the 3ball scene as much as possible and I began to realise how much less tribal prehispanico is being made today compared to the more urban and pop oriented versions of the genre. I really hope that the prehispanic sound will make a comeback this year, hopefully upgraded with deep way or with some experimental techno sounds. But this track is not tribal prehispanico but a cumbia remix of the track Dígitos, of the hiphop formation Serko Fu. Check out the the original here, performed in live in Monterrey!
The other track that he released on his soundcloud this week is also classified as cumbia-hop. This deliciously minimalistic production fuses a cumbia groove with oldschool hiphop scratch-sounds and mysteriously downpitched vocals. ‘Cumbia del Migrante’ appears as a protest song without lyrics but with a lot of power.
Blogging for SSC for about half a year now, I notice that I haven’t paid enough attention to the nu-cumbia scene in Colombia yet, which is weird because the roots of both the cumbia and my own, lie in that country. One of the exceptions (next to Dany-F of course) is Don Alex, the accordionist, remixer and producer from Bogotá, whom I also blogged a couple of weeks ago. This week, he did a cumbia remix of Mi$$ound‘s (great!!) experimental dembow-tronic sing ‘Estirando el Tempo‘!
I was new to Pabz El Tropical until I discovered this new release via a comment from Yelram Selectah. I’m happy to see that he is back in the game. His other tracks are all from about a year ago and breathe precisely the crazy, otherworldly Tijuana-vibe that we all know from Yelram. I’m hope to see many more tunes from him appearing this year!
Crazy and otherworldly is a description definitely applicable to the style of Panikooo as well. I’m glad to have stumbled upon his tracks because I think this kind of experimental stuff should definitely stay in the focus of the blogs. His account doesn’t give any additional information, like a home town or an artist website. His repetitive, slightly monotonal sound sometimes comes very close to the Mexican cumbiaton from the Tiestoriki channel but the style of his logo looks more inspired by digital cumbia scene.. I hope to be able to solve this mystery soon, in a future post! ^^
I realised that I have overlooked a last great track a couple of weeks ago. Couldn’t resist sharing with you guys still.. It is a production from Mexico City based collective Club de Baile CD’M, who have dubbed their style ´roñoso’… ‘grungy’..!! This delicious ‘happy-dark’ tune with deep synths and kind of an 80s flavour, should have deserves a central place in my Christmas post: ‘Piñata’!
For the weekly ‘dub’ category, I’ve got two tracks to share this week..
The first is the new one from Dj RAYO, who teamed up with Tribilín Sound for an energetic but downtempo interpretation of the absolute cumbia-classic ‘Chambacu’! Behind the dreamy dub sound, they make subtle use of dembow elements and even some bright 808 hihats make an appearance!
We haven’t seen El Mencho Cumbia Dub so often as we have seen RAYO the last weeks but he is back now with this new quiet, thoughtful, even emotional tune: ‘El dueño de tus besos’!
Elegante & La Imperial is a digital cumbia and andes-bass (‘chicha bass’) producer from Peru with quite an extensive following who cumbiafied James Blake’s ‘Lindisfarne’.. an very experimental, minimalistic rock song from 2011, accompanied by a full blown arthouse’ish movie as its music video. Here is it in cumbia version:
Last week we saw the 3ball collective Onda Beat moving into cumbia. This week, the sophisticated 3ball-bass and latin-pop producer TheDjB uploaded this song by the vocalists Decufé and Antifaz..: Cumbia that leans heavily towards nu-salsa..!
I didn’t know Antifaz yet but Decufé has been working closely together with artists like TheDjB and Dj Tetris. Make sure you check out his other tracks as well..
With Arturo Herrera, a healthy dose of mashup-craze is guaranteed. This week he released three tracks, two of them cumbia-moombahton mashups..
Usually ‘moombia’ is one of the most ‘natural’ combinations in bass, but Arturo wouldn’t be himself if he did not first evoke a “dafuq?!”-reaction, before you will realise that this actually ‘works’ ! ^^
These vibes beg for more clubbing-energy now!
This fresh-new banger from ETC!ETC! was his musical sign that his passion for moombahton is still goign strong as ever ! Hereby: shout out from Generation Bass: this makes us happy ! This mini-track actually deserved a much more prominent place in this post, on the blog in general, but there was no better way to fit in a cumbia-groove building up towards an energetic moombah-drop than at this place..
That means: time for more euphoria! I wanna see all your hands up in the air with CumbiaDrive‘s delicious cumbia version of Animals!
Your final portion of club-happiness for this week is delivered by dj Chuky813: a cumbia version of Eminem & Rihanna’s ‘Love the Way You Lie’!
And if you are in doubt about your dance moves tonight.. here we’ve got some smooth ones!