For over a decade, Names You Can Trust has presented a variety of new music that has grown from a prolific network of talented musicians in Colombia’s capital city. Frente Cumbiero, Romperayo, La Boa, and Meridian Brothers are some of the important names to have reached a well-deserved global audience. The scene itself in Bogotá has been on the cutting edge for some time, and this new generation of musical spirit has naturally become a beacon in the tropical music community, not only as a standard bearer for honoring tradition but as well as the ability to flip that tradition on its head, with thoughtful modern and technological experimentations. The good news is that there are no signs of this particular renaissance slowing down, as some of these marquee names in the aforementioned list have expanded their creative output as producers, engineers and mixers.
In this case, Meridian Brothers creator and musical savant, Eblis Álvarez lends his expertise to a new emerging septet of tropicalistas, La Sonora Mazurén, named after a northern neighborhood in Bogotá. The group’s mission is best described as an exploration into the many influences of tropical music that have thrived in Colombia for decades. Think cumbia, chicha, charanga and vallenato to name a few, and that’s where we land on with the group’s debut single for NYCT. It’s an apt illustration of the band’s range, starting with the A-side’s quintessential “Charanga Mazurén,” a throwback to pure dancefloor accordion bliss, a pulse that is synchronized with the aura of Colombia’s legends such as Landero, Meza, or Gutiérrez. The B-side “Cachicha” is a take on the all-important chicha, which has become an inescapable and essential part of Peru’s national cumbia, and likewise a staple within Colombia’s borders since the advent of the popular style on record back in the day. That tradition continues here, the familiar pluck of the psychedelic guitars mixed with an array of synthesized sonics, the palette of Peru mixed with that of producer Álvarez’s wizardry and the group’s talented players.
- Label: Names You Can Trust
- Cat No: NYCT-7079
- Format: 7-INCH
- Speed: 45 RPM