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Wanderlust

A Misturada – Os Muiraquitãns

Amazing music from Brazil

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“A Misturada” by Os Muiraquitãns
Taken from the Various Artists compilation ‘Jambú e Os Míticos Sons Da Amazônia’ (out 21 June 2019 on Analog Africa)

The city of Belém, in the Northern state of Pará in Brazil, has long been a hotbed of culture and musical innovation. Enveloped by the mystical wonder of the Amazonian forest and overlooking the vastness of the Atlantic Ocean, Belém consists of a diverse culture as vibrant and broad as the Amazon itself. Amerindians, Europeans, Africans – and the myriad combinations between these people – would mingle, and ingeniously pioneer musical genres such as Carimbó, Samba-De-Cacete, Siriá, Bois-Bumbás and bambiá. Although left in the margins of history, these exotic and mysteriously different sounds would thrive in a parallel universe of their own.

Perched on a peninsula between the Bay of Guajará and the Guamá river, sculpted by water into ports, small deltas and peripheral areas, Belém had connected city dwellers with those deeper within the forest providing fertile ground for the development of a popular culture mirroring the mighty waters surrounding it. Through the continuous flow of culture, language and tradition, various rhythms were gathered here and transformed into new musical forms that were simultaneously traditional and modern.

Historically marginalized African religions like Umbanda, Candomblé and the Tambor de Mina, which had reached this side of the Atlantic through slaves from West Africa – especially from the Kingdom of Dahomey, currently the Republic of Benin – left an indelible stamp on the identity of Pará´s music. They would give birth to Lundun, Banguê and Carimbó, styles later modernised by Verequete, Orlando Pereira, Mestre Cupijó and Pinduca to great effect. The success of these pioneers would create a solid foundation for a myriad of modern bands in urban areas.

Known as the “Caribbean Port,” Belem had been receiving signal from radio stations from Colombia, Surinam, Guyana and the Caribbean islands – notably Cuba and the Dominican republic – since the 1940s. By the early 1960s, Disc jockeys breathlessly exchanged Caribbean records to add these frenetic, island sounds to liven up revelers. The competition was fierce as to who would be the first to bring unheard hits from these countries. The craze eventually reached local bands’ repertoires, and Belém’s suburbs got overtaken by merengue, leading to the creation of modern sounds such as Lambada and Guitarrada.

Another important aspect in understanding how the musical tradition spread in Belém, are the aparelhagem sonora: the sound system culture of Pará. Beginning as simple gramophones connected to loudspeakers tied to light posts or trees, these sound systems livened up neighbourhood parties and family gatherings. The equipment evolved from amateur models into sophisticated versions, perfected over time through the wisdom of handymen. Today’s aparelhagens draw immense crowds, packing clubs with thousands of revelers in Belém’s peripheral neighbourhoods or inland towns in Pará.

With bustling night clubs providing the best sound systems and erotic live shows, gossip about the whereabouts of legendary bands, singers turned into movie stars, supreme craftiness, and the creativity of a class of musicians that didn’t hesitate to take a gamble, Jambú is an exhilarating, cinematic ride into the beauty and heart of what makes Pará’s little corner of the Amazon tick. The hip swaying, frantic percussion and big band brass of the mixture of carimbó with siriá, the mystical melodies of Amazonian drums, the hypnotizing cadence of the choirs, and the deep, musical reverence to Afro-Brazilian religions, provided the soundtrack for sweltering nights in the city’s club district.

The music and tales found in Jambú are stories of resilience, triumph against all odds, and, most importantly, of a city in the borders of the Amazon who has always known how to throw a damn good party.

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Wanderlust

Colombia’s Independent Powerhouse Compilation

Biggest contemporary folklore alliance in Colombian modern musical history

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From the Afro-Indigenous rhythms of Bullerengue and Cumbia, to Currulao and Bunde on the Pacific Coast, Calypso on the Caribbean islands, Bambuco and Joropo in the plains, to countless “modern” versions of all these traditional folk music styles, Colombia is becoming recognized as one of the most diverse musical countries in the world.



The “Colombian Music PowerHouses” project is a humble attempt to show the immense diversity of our country’s music and culture to a wider public. For this purpose we’ve gathered together as independent music labels; a joint collaboration between seven key Colombian “PowerHouses” to bring you a non-exclusive selection of today’s Colombian music. We know there are other labels and artists out there who deserve just as much attention and visibility as the ones who were brought together in this compilation, but we hope these picks will arouse your curiosity and inspire you to dig deeper into the fascinating world of Colombian music.

The “Colombian Music PowerHouses” are:
Palenque Records
Polen Records
Sonidos Enraizados
Tambora Records
Llorona Records
Mambo Negro Records
Galletas Calientes Records

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Wanderlust

Dengue Dengue Dengue- Zenit & Nadir

Strong return of the magnificent Peruvian folklorists via Enchufada records

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Dengue Dengue Dengue continue expanding their carefully created aesthetic on their new album ‘Zenit & Nadir’ by diving into the deep and rich musical history of Afro-Peruvian music, already hinted in the first single ‘Ágni’, which is the inversion of the traditional Afro-Peruvian rhythm Ingá.

The ongoing exploration of the vast and rich musical heritage of the descendants of the former African slaves in Peru has become the main focus of their new album.

Enchufada also drops this wicked remix

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Marginal Original

Grupo Bongar + Maga Bo – Macumbadaboa

Impressive collaboration exploring the lesser known Afro-Brazilian genres with an electronic twist

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“Macumbadaboa” unites the ancestral sounds of Grupo Bongar from Pernambuco, Brazil with the electronic and dub elements of Maga Bo, the American/Brazilian DJ/producer based in Rio de Janeiro. The project includes the participation of various well known Pernambuco artists – Isaar, Cláduio Rabeca, Lia de Itamaracá e as Filhas do Baracho, Lu do Coco do Pneu, members from the Xambá terreiro, children from the local community as well as the Malian kora player Adama Keita. The album explores many northeastern Brazilian rhythms such as coco, afoxé and maculelê as well as subtle elements of electronic and dub music.

The songs were recorded in an improvised studio set up by Maga Bo in the Memorial Severina Paraíso da Silva – Mãe Biu, in the terreiro of Xambá in Olinda. The intention was to bring Grupo Bongar into a familiar atmosphere where Guitinho could compose music and lyrics on the spot, inspired by the history of the Xambá community which was represented by all of the photos, antiques and relics that surrounded them in the Memorial.

“The lyrics emerged from observing the pieces that make up the Memorial. The old photos, the utensiles used in the terreiro in the time of Mãe Biu, the old percussion instruments, the maps of Nigeria and Cameroon (where the Xambá folk originated) and the articles of clothing from that time. Finally, everything that reminds us of our history and the history of our people,” explains Guitinho. “The repertoire of this album brings traditional songs for the orixás and the entitiies of Jurema. The original lyrics emerged in the moment, through my observation of the pieces in the Memorial, during the recording.” – Marileide Alves 

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