South America to the world

Over the past ten years the international music media has sporadically raved about the latest bubbling scene from the ‘hip’ city of the moment, be it Montevideo, Bogota or Buenos Aires. These days when we talk about modern, underground Latin American music it’s not about disparate pockets or unconnected scenes but a thriving, diverse, border crossing movement of cross-pollination and global interaction. How we view traditional Latin American music has been turned on its head and these developments are having reverberations across the world.

In the mid 2000s now household names in the scene like Frikstailers, Chancha via Circuito and Matanza, helped by platforms like ZZK Records, began to make noises for their fresh take on the continent’s traditional rhythms and music. However, they demonstrated there was something beyond the nucumbia or ethno-techno tags they had been assigned, laying the foundations for a new generation of beatmakers constructing and deconstructing a ‘New Latin American Sound’.

You could call Chancha Via Circuito one of this movement’s godfathers. In fact the quietly spoken Argentine shaman directly bequeathed his own sound and productions techniques to the new generation through his now famous production tallers (classes) in his home city of Buenos Aires. Three years on from his last album Rio Arriba, Chancha this week released his latest work Amansara and in doing so demonstrated how the sound of him and his contemporaries has revolutionised modern Latin American folk music.

Simultaneously organic and electronic, local and global Amansara is his most accomplished album yet. An album that carves out and refines his beautiful interpretation of folk music in a modern, international context. On the heels of fellow Argentine folk-tronic trio Tremor, Amansara is released on Wonderwheel, the New York based imprint run by Nickodemus.

This very Latin American sound, deeply grounded in the continent’s sounds, landscapes, mythology and cultures has made waves across the world and in turn impacted a new generation of producers in South America and beyond. A nod to the scene and testament to the family that has grown up around it, Amansara includes a beautiful ‘apprentice and teacher’ moment on the track Sabiamantis which features Barrio Lindo and Sidirum, two young producers who both attended one of Chancha’s classes.

The legacy of this ‘ZZK’ generation is clear to see in the sound of producers like Sidirum, taking inspiration from the scene’s instigators whilst adding their own influences and driving in new directions. Yesterday the Chilean based net imprint Sello Regional released their 20th EP, a collection of global remixes of Sidirum’s fantastic Le Soleil EP showcasing this next generation of like-minded producers from Latin American, Europe, the US and beyond. With guests like Haarlem’s (the Dutch one…) Umoja, Ecuador’s Nicola Cruz and Hamburg’s bombombum this is an international affair and another hint at how the scene has expanded to influence young bedroom producers across the world. The description to Le Soleil remixes sums things up nicely:

‘Generar unión por medio de la música y mostrar la visión que pueden entregar diferentes artistas de un mismo objeto. Así es como queda una obra colectiva, libre y con mucho amor por la música.’

‘Generating union through the medium of music and showing the different interpretations that artists can create from the same object. In this sense this is a work that is free collective and filled with a love for music.’

Rhythm and Roots Radio – Volume 16

We are very excited to share with you the very first ever Rhythm and Roots Radio show coming to you from the newly launched Groovalizacion Radio with you host El Búho. The new monthly radio show will bring you the freshest mix of classic roots music alongside new, future tropical rhythms from across the world (with a little leaning towards Latin American music 😉 ).

This first episode features the talented Ecuadorian producer Nicola Cruz and new tracks from Dengue Dengue Dengue, Alsarah and the Nubatones, Castro and more. You can check out the full tracklist after the break.

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DJ iZem – EP2

DJ IZem - EP2 COver

Lisbon based French producer DJ iZem has been quietly bubbling away over the past couple of years as a producer on the rise. The few tracks and remixes that he has released have demonstrated a talented artist with a unique style blending tropical rhythms with funk influences, smooth synths with live instrumentation and deep basses with smooth vocals, epitomised by 2011’s brilliant Quiver / Debaixo D’Agua EP. He returns with his 2nd EP… EP2, offering another slice of quality, warm, soulful, topically infused electronica. What’s more, it is available for free download (!)

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Sunday Songs

Here in Amsterdam the sun is shining and summer is finally here (at least for a weekend). To celebrate here is a little playlist of some sunny, Sunday songs:

Makina – Gringas

New Makina is always welcome and this little collection is no different. Gringas is a mini EP of “Hipster Chicha, Tribal, Cumbia-Step and Beach Cumbia”, tropifiying Lana del Rey, Dillon, Gotye and Jenny Wilson. Four refreshing and really quality cuts of tropitastic pop AND you can download them for free below.

Freaky Fridays: Colombia’s El Freaky Colectivo

I have been hearing a lot of hype of late about Colombia’s Freaky Colectivo (mainly due to some tireless Twitter PRing!) and it seems the team of DJs/producers (@andreshaq @djmikestyle @kmmy_ranks @fatsugardaddy) are the ones to look to for futuristic tropical heat in Bogota.

The collective, which has been running a regular Freaky Friday clubnight for nearly four years (!), draws musical lines between urban bass music and folklore in an “anything goes if it makes you dance” kind of fashion. The ZZK of Bogota anyone?

El Freaky have shared the stage with some of the biggest names on the global bass scene including Toy Selectah, Que Bajo? honchos Uproot Andy and Geko Jones, Diplo, Calle 13, ZZK’s bearded tropi-pop don El Remolón, Peligrosa’s DJ Orion and even Peruvian child star Wendy Sulca!

300 songs, 7 DJs, 8-15 genres: Freaky Friday's 10 hour spectacle

It is interesting to see the mutations of latin/afro folklore with electronica/global bass come back to one of its spiritual homes to be re-interpretated and mutated once more. Musical migrations at their best! So, if you are ever in Bogota and looking for a good party on a Friday night, Freaky seems to be the place to be. Check them out via TwitterFacebook and Soundcloud.

ZZK European Tour & El Remolón Mixtape

To promote ZZK‘s forthcoming tour of Europe the label has commissioned electropical-cumbiero El Remolon to put together a little mixtape. New music from the Argentine producer/remixer extraodinaire is always welcome and the mix is scatterd with fresh remixes (Nicolas Jaar and Los Destellos) and new material (including a tribute to Argentine cumbia/pop legend Gilda!) – tracklist and ZZK tour info after the music.

El Remolon – ZZK Fall Tour Mixtape

Tracklist
1. Mercedes Sosa – Guitarra Dimelo Tu (El Remolón Remix)
2. Nicolas Jaar – Keep Me There (El Remolón Refix)
2. El Remolón – Cuelgue que te cuelgue
3. Los Destellos – Lamento de la Selva (El Remolón Remix)
4. Fauna – Para Mi (Prod. por El Remolón)
5. Air France – Max Le Daron Remix
6. Lorna – Papi Chulo (Javier Estrada Remix)
7. Daniel Klauser – Circuito Americano
8. La Portuaria – Selva (El Remolón & Le Freak Selector Remix)
9. Analogik – Don Texas (El Remolón Remix)
10. Os Paralamas Do Suceso – Alagados (El Remolón Remix)
11. El Remolón – Se me ha perdido un remolón (Gilda Tribute)
12. El Remolón + Super Gachin vs MC Caco – Los Guachines
13. Los Reyes de La Milanga – No Me Mires Más
14. El Remolón – El Preferido
15. El Remolón + Lido Pimienta [aka Remolido] – Atrás

The tour will bring a large portion of the ZZK stable to European shores (Fauna, Tremor, El Remolon, Mati Zundel (Lagartijeando), El G and the VJ Mariela Bond) so check them out in a town near you! And if there are any UK promoters out there…book them! Dates and details after the jump.

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