Blow Up - Bomba Estereo


Nacional Records are mining one of the richest veins in contemporary global music today; the Latin Alternative scene. They have reignited the rage surrounding Argentina’s Los Fabulosos Cadillacs and established Mexican Institute of Sound aka Camilo Lara (ironically, himself an EMI Mexico executive), Nortec Collective and the like as gatekeepers to Latin America’s new music frontier. Now they bring us Bomba Estereo’s North American debut, Blow Up, the next ‘new thing’ in a genre that seemingly thrives on invention. It should come as no surprise that Bomba Estereo’s thing was shaken out of this movement’s epicenter, the alternative underground of Bogotá, Colombia. The band formed in 2001, so, indicative of the scene, Blow Up is not an overnight sensation, but sensational none the less. Leaning on the rhythmic traditions of Colombia’s Caribbean side, Bomba amps their natural intensity into dance floor drive with electronic punch and dubby backbeats. Plus, it never hurts to have a secret weapon. Bomba Estereo’s is front and centre and all over the stage. Vocalist Li Saumet raps and sings with a seamless flow around the herky-jerky cumbia and champeta meter of their music. “We want to break through the frontiers”, she says, “Our idea is to take our music to the whole world.” They can thank Nacional Records for the opportunity and the time to realize that vision. Label founder, Tomas Cookman sums up the slow, steady progress of the Latin Alternative movement this way, “It’s not going to be exploding tomorrow and then gone nine months later. It’s not about one song, one band, one dance move, one fashion. We don’t need our Macarena moment. As long as we’re not going backwards, it’s a beautiful thing.”