That's My Jam!: El Remolón's Electro-Cumbia Groove

Categories: That's My Jam!
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El Remolón
I recently learned what exactly makes a cumbia rhythm, and it's basically a slow-grooving shaker making a simple rhythm like "CHK-chky CHK-chky CHK-chky CHK" and so on. "Basta Ya," a stellar track from ZZK stalwart El Remolón, is officially a bit of electronic cumbia excellence thanks to the producer exchanging the obligatory shaker percussion with some simple mouth-made sounds. But that's just the beginning; the inimitable talents of singer Lido Pimienta threaten to overshadow the eclectic instrumentation on this soulful number.

Toy pianos, jangling wooden chimes, calming synths, bulbous bass melodies, and some unknown rumblings are all part of the milieu within which Pimienta's vocals float about hauntingly. The song seems slightly playful in its plinking soundscapes, but if the feelings they evoke are any indication, the Spanish-sung lyrics aren't likely to be about anything less than love or heartbreak. And while this song is a wonderfully somber tune, when El Remolón and the rest of his ZZK crew (Tremor, Chancha Vía Circuito, and El G) travel up from Buenos Aires to take over Rickshaw Stop this Thursday, they're sure to bring along far more upbeat and spicy Latin-flavored jams.

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