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Show Recap: Heloise & the Savoir Faire at Amoeba Hollywood

Posted by Billy Gil, July 11, 2013 01:00pm | Post a Comment

Elijah Wood aka DJ Jamie Starr began the July 10 set at Amoeba Hollywood playing obscure disco and funk beats from the likes of Benis Letin, Kiki Gyan and Betty Padgett (thank god for Shazam), throwing in a little bit of The Jets and ESG to round it out. Heloise came out dressed in head-to-toe leopard print wrapped in a pink sequined fabric, sounding great despite singing along to just a backing track on “Perelandra,” from her excellent alt-pop album Diamond Dust. “Are you wearing comfortable shoes?” she asked before performing to jagged disco song “Dancefloor Destroyer.” “Let the music move you” she sang on the Kylie-ish "Dive In," shimmying around like the alternative diva she is, cooing in exotic ways and then played along on an iPhone-based electric organ — no one rocks an app-based instrument like Heloise! On the last song, “Vibezz,” she whipped around her microphone wire to the song’s slow synth chords and pumped her fist when the beat picked up, belting over the backing track and owning the stage with her one-woman show.

See more photos from the performance here.

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Cicadageddon 2013: Celebrate with Sublime Frequencies' Insect Electronica LP!

Posted by Kells, May 24, 2013 02:44pm | Post a Comment

You know The Great 2013 U.S. East Coast Cicada Invasion is in full effect when local restaurants begin to tout cicada-centric menu items with hearty "if you can't beat 'em, eat 'em" gusto. For those unfamiliar with the phenomenon, the Cicadageddon that emerges from the ground every seventeen years, North Carolina to New England, is a fleeting affair that has everything to do with sound and vision -- the pulsating reverberations of their billions-stong buzzworthy mating calls drowning out the din of daily life, outdoor concerts and all. But you don't have to live inside the E.C.C.S.Z. (East Coast Cicada Sex Zone) to get in on the sonic action as this sort of thing happens in other parts of the world and the well-traveled field recording gurus down at Sublime Frequencies want you to indulge your senses with their oh-so-timely vinyl release of Brokenhearted Dragonflies: Insect Electronica from Southeast Asia.

This limited edition LP pressing of the long out-of-print CD from 2004 presents for your listening pleasure the sounds of swarms of male dragonflies gathered together to join in choruses of high-pitched tones for one purpose: they're looking for sex. The ones that don't succeed in wooing and winning their mates eventually scream so loud that their chests explode and they drop dead to the ground, or so the legend goes. These recordings are a tribute to this legend.

Droning cicadas, dragonflies, and other insects display their charm as masters of the high frequency airwaves, recorded live and unprocessed by Tucker Martine in the lush settings of Laos, Thailand, and Burma -- the occasional thunderstorm included. Enter the supernatural world where entomology and electronica converge in a tropical hallucination of alien sound. Anyone who has ever wondered if these strange symphonies could be recorded or preserved as precisely as they sound in the field need look no further. Martine has done it and you will be transported to the exact experience one would encounter in these mysterious lowlands.

The LP includes an insert with photos and liner notes by Hakim Bey and Alan Bishop. Get yours today and celebrate the Great 2013 Cicada Invasion in style!
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Co-Founder of ZZK Records El G In Los Angeles This Week

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, January 13, 2013 10:08pm | Post a Comment
 
Back in 2008, after reading many blogs about a happening party in Buenos Aires, Argentina that played Electro-Cumbia music, one of the persons responsible for that party showed up at Amoeba Hollywood with CD copies of The ZZK Sound Vol. 1-Cumbia Digital. We were the first U.S. store to carry any of their product and it quickly became one of my favorite releases of that year. Since then, ZZK Records has released many great CD/LPS/Downloads from such artists as Chancha Via Circuito, Fauna, Tremor and last year's excellent compilation, The Future Sounds Of Buenos Aires, which was my favorite release of 2012. 

The sound of ZZK Records combines several electronic movements, such as Electro-Cumbia, Dubstep and other forms of experimental Electro with a sound that goes back to the folkloric groups of Argentina's past. If Atahualpa Yupanqui and Mercedes Sosa grew up listening to Dancehall Reggae, Cumbia Villera and Electro, maybe it would sound like this.

That person that came into the store back in 2008 is Grant C.Dull, also known as El G. He is currently on tour promoting The Future Sounds Of Buenos Aires and has three shows in the Los Angeles area. Be sure to check out one or all of them.

You can check out El G's shows at:

Wednesday, January 16th
In-Store Performance at Espacio 1839
1839 E. First Street
Los Angeles, Ca. 90033 (Boyle Heights)
From 6-9pm
Live broadcast on radiosombra.org
7pm-9pm PST
All-Ages/Free

After the event at Espacio 1839, the party moves two doors down at Eastside Luv for one of L.A.'s most happening club nights, Subsuelo

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The Future Sounds Of Buenos Aires-A Review By Gomez Comes Alive

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, November 19, 2012 08:04am | Post a Comment
There will always be an argument about where the whole “Digital Cumbia “ movement started. Did it arrive from German electronic composer Uwe Schmidt, (aka Señor Coconut) forays into tropical music that merge German electro-sensibilities with Latin American rhythms? Was it Toy Selectah’s production, mixing urban Hip-Hop with Sonidero that made Celso Piña’s massive hit, “Cumbia Sobre El Rio”? Was it British world travelers, Up Bustle & Out, whose journeys into Mexico led them to discover Sonidero, mixed with Reggae and Hip-Hop? Was it 2005 white label 12” release of Cumbia Mash-Ups made by Chico Sonido & Toy Selectah, mashing up Missy Elliot and Rick Ross acapellas with Cumbia Rebajada? One can argue it was ZZK’s landmark ZZK Sound Vol.1 Cumbia Digital, which received tons of international press which led every remixer who had an account of SoundCloud to add guacharaca on every insignificant remix they made.

In the end, it really doesn’t matter. What matters is what is good and what isn’t. All those names mention above has its place in the creation of Nu Cumbia, Electro-Cumbia, Digital Cumbia, Moombaton and every-related sub-genre that was created to describe a new sound that mixed the barrios of Latin America and it’s counterparts from academia and entitlement. In the end, barrio kids and the college kids created a baby and that’s what we have now.

Nothing more exemplifies this than ZZK’s latest release, The Future Sounds Of Buenos Aires. Besides defying what it means to be a Digital Cumbia artist in 2012 beyond creating dance floor jams, it is an example of the modern day Argentina. Argentina has been criticized as being the most European of all the Latin American countries, mainly for embracing the culture of their conqueror that other Latin American cultures are quick to dismiss it. When we think of the music of music of Argentina, we think of the Eurocentric Tango, or the thousands of Latin Rock groups that imitated the sounds of whatever was happening in Anglolandia, whether it was the Kinks and The Beatles in the 60’s, Led Zeppelin and Queen in the 70’s or The Police and Depeche Mode in the 80’s. It’s hard to remember that such brilliant artists as Mercedes Sosa, Atahualpa Yupanqui, Facundo Cabral, all who embraced the indigenous roots and incorporated it with their European influences, came from Argentina.

The Future Sounds of Buenos Aires doesn’t hide its European roots. Yet the latest roster from the ZZK label shows more of their indigenous leanings and immigrant roots. Cumbia Viera, a street Cumbia coming from the barrios of Buenos Aires via the Ecuador and Peru, still lay heavy on the ZZK roster, but now those rhythms are mixed with native flutes from the Andean mountains and folk instrumentation from Bolivia and Venezuela. The mixture of Argentine folklore with Cumbia, Glitch and Dubstep, makes perfect sense. The experimentation from this release may comes at a cost to the dance floor, but in the end, it makes for a better listen. The chances that you will have The Future Sounds Of Buenos Aires stuck on repeat is far greater than finding the next Cumbia re-edit banger on SoundCloud, and more rewarding as well.    

Divine Discs of the Electronic Continuum

Posted by Rick Frystak, September 13, 2012 02:28pm | Post a Comment


I am a searcher, never quite satisfied with music and sounds that already exist. There are many like myself out there. I am consistently persuing electronics-based records like these herein that testify to the pioneering spirit of those musicians, composers and scientists in search of the newest “musical “sounds available via technology of all levels of sophistication. Throughout history the primitive object or idea will lead the way to a monumentally sophisticated one, and visa-versa, as long as one is paying attention. Take thefuzzbox for example. That thing lead a revolution of little boxes that one plugs one’s instrument into to get big, wild (and conversely subtle) effects on said instrument ranging from fuzzy distortion to multiple octave voices to…God knows what now, huge racks of processing gear for a single riff.  At the same time in another part of the culture, guys and gals in long white lab coats were fiddling with room-sized computers to get a single tone that was not produced by a musical instrument, but alas, hallehlujah, a machine did it! And other folks were stringing audio tape across rooms and cutting inches of tape recordings to compose new recordings (Musique Concrete) to make other recordings to manipulate and, well, you get it.

The sense of experimentation and the ability to manifest those ideas has never left the true creative artist. There are sonic “searchers” among us that will never be satisfied with what already exists in the known sound worlds, and it is this motivation that fuels records like these. The daring ones, without concern of peer’s criticisms or naysayer’s pessimism, have forged ahead with whatever tools available to take these ideas and run with…no, FLY with them to the edges of reality.

Fortunately, labels like Creel Pone, EM, Wergo, DGG, edition RZ, Sub Rosa and many others have lovingly reissued some of these treasured  discs and simultaneously introduced new audiences to these sounds and accompanying legend. These LPs below are all original issues that Amoeba has miraculously acquired over the past 6 months and I present these as a sort of holy offering by clicking these titles and being taken to Amoeba.com for purchasing. Truly, these are sacred documents.
 

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