Antionio Hernández and Camilo Lara could be described as the modern-day dons of Latin music. The two producers better known as Toy Selectah and Mexican Institute of Sound have helped shape, globalise and drive the evolution of modern Latin American music. From the advent of digital Cumbia to subtly infusing modern-day Pop with Latin roots and sounds, the influence of these two can be felt on dancefloors and charts all over the world. Under the name Compass, the two have now combined forces on a project celebrating and championing global sound. It is in their words, the duo’s “PhD thesis on global music production”.
The name Compass comes from the Mexican compas or compadres meaning buddies but is also a metaphor for the project’s navigation around the world of modern music production. The album to be released in 2015 features an astounding 80 collaborators, from four continents, endless genres, styles and sounds.
“WE WANTED TO SHOW PEOPLE THAT THE DANCEFLOOR IS THE SAME EVERYWHERE; IT’S A VERY DEMOCRATIC PLACE WHERE ANYONE CAN SHARE MUSIC’S ENERGY”
Alongside some recognisable names in the Latin electronic music scene like Bonde Do Role, DJ Dusty, Eric Bobo (Cypress Hill) and Helado Negro, the project also features a few surprises including Boy George, Toots & the Maytals, Sly & Robbie and Roxy Music’s Phil Manzanera. As Lara says: “It’s a global album, but it all has a distinctive Mexican flavour.”
The album will be released next year but watch out for a series of five videos detailing the project recording process and more via Red Bull. Red Bull, which supported the recording of the album, also last week released a preview of one of the tracks, La Llama.
“IT’S JUST MUSIC, WE ALL SHARE A BEAT, YOU KNOW?”
This cut is held together by a trademark MIS sample fuelled beat fused with the global influences of Notch (formerly of Born Jamericans), New York’s Matty Rico and Ohmega Watts, ghetto-techno empress Maluca, legendary Cali dj Kut Masta Kurt and Beastie Boys collaborator Money Mark. Check out an interview with the two dons here for more information.