Archive for the 'Electro Latino' Category



Two From Dj Lengua

I wanted to start the New Year off right by throwing up some free downloads from Dj Lengua’s new 7 song EP release Cruzando. Usually I try not put up anything from my label (Unicornio), I like to keep it separate from my audioblog. But Eamon (Lengua), suggested that I  should offer a few tracts for free while I was out of the country  – so here we are. This is probably our best album/release to date. Juan Data from the Hard Data did a good article on Dj Lengua, you should check it out if you want more info on the record. Also, you can purchase the vinyl directly from our distributor or turntable lab if you wish. You can also email me at sonidofranko@gmail.com if you have questions about the record. Happy New Year everybody! Enjoy!

1. Dj Lengua: La Jungla

2. Dj Lengua: Frontera

Moog Montuno con Juancho Vargas

It’s quite common to find compilation records in Latin America that started out as a corporate marketing strategy. I have a few LP’s from a natural gas company in Venezuela – which are pretty good. However, I’m not sure if Goodyear Tires had a successful branding campaign when they dropped this collection. The mixture of salsa, pop, cumbia, and Henri Mancini soundtrack music is just downright weird. Most of the songs aren’t that great and there doesn’t seem to be any method to the triple album’s selections.

However, all this is soon forgotten with the inclusion of just one song: the synth monster Montuniando by Colombian pianist Juancho Vargas. The track reminded me of the music Cuban Juan Pablo Torres was doing in the 70’s than anything else, peep the post I wrote about him a while back. Juancho Vargas is probably better known for his big band style cumbia/jazz and not so much this experimental style of salsa/son montuno. One a side note, the album was produced by the Colombian label Sonolux. There are references to a FM radio station in the Colombian town of Sogamoso and a reference to possibly some tire service chain. Perhaps they handed these out to their customers. Anyway….Enjoy!

1. Juancho Vargas: Montuniando

Techno-Banda Boom

There is no other song I know that exemplifies the popular techno banda style more than Grupo El Mexicano’s No Bailes De Caballito. This song is kind of a classic in the genre and still gets radio time to this day. In fact, I probably would have guessed that the song was written yesterday, rather than in 1992. Which really demonstrates the longevity the Banda sound has had in mainstream Mexico. Just don’t play this song too loud in Arizona, you might get deported.

To be honest with you, I’m not a huge fan of banda music, but these few tracks really stood out for me. Banda is more or less the fusion of Norteño music with larger brass instrumentation, fiery orchestras, larger hats, and matching suits. Techo banda however seems to take it a step further opting for synthesizers rather than tubas. Grupo El Mexicano rock synthesizer guitars. This music got really popular in the early 90’s and with that came a series of dance crazes like the quebradita – a dance, which at times, looks more like gymnastics.  

I tossed in the super fast track from Banda Guadalajara Express, which has a less techno sound than the first. But I couldn’t help think about the similarities between Banda, Merengue, and Perez Prado. Maybe it’s the kinetic break neck speeds and the matching outfits. I’ll definitely explore the Perez Prado influence in the next post. Enjoy! 

1. Grupo El Mexicano: No Bailes De Caballito

2. Banda Guadalajara Express: Anda Borracho El Buey

Moog Pop with Katunga

There wasn’t much to be optimistic about in 1975 Argentina. From the death of Juan Perón in 1974, it seemed like this polarized South American nation was beginning to unravel. With waves of political violence, near-hyperinflation, strikes, to assassinations: Argentina was boiling over. I thought Nicaraguan politics were screwy, but I have to say that Argentina takes the cake. Trotskyites  vs. fascist extremists?

Maybe Katunga’s popular Mira Para Arriba Mira Para Abajo struck a chord with the uncertainty of the everyday Argentine. A positive reaffirmation, escapism perhaps. But I’m pretty sure this song would have been harder to write a year later. With the March 1976 coup d’état and the start of the “dirty war”, their song seems a bit less effective.

Nevertheless, a few great bubble-gum flavored numbers from the band Katunga, who by the way, remind me a lot of the popular Spanish group Formula V. Sorry I couldn’t get much from the bands webpage/bio, but it appears that Katunga still performs to this day. Enjoy!

 1. Katunga: Mira Para Arriba Mira Para Abajo

2. Katunga: Palo Bonito

El Expreso de Medianoche

I was a guest on KALX with El Roger Mas. Check out our all organ Latin set. You can hear me talking @ 14:00 minutes into it. Man I sound like a little kid. Enjoy!

El Expreso de Medianoche

Carlos Pickling—Cumbia Morena
Mariachi Nuevo Tecalitlan—Cumbia Arabe
Chicken y Sus Commandos—Cumbia Sampuesana
Los Aragon—Mar y Sol
Mario y sus Diamantes—Quena
Negros de Colombia—La Especulacion
Negros de Colombia—Bomba Tropical
Gustavo Pimintel—Pata Pata
Camacho y Cano y su Grupo—Gaita Numero Uno
Los Diplomaticos—La Samaria
Grupo Standard’s—Cumbia en el Palmar
Grupo Salas—Mar y Sol
Jose y sus Antillanos—Melodia Antillana
Los Beltons—Adios Pueblo
Jose y sus Antillanos—Morena Linda
Manzanita y su Conjunto—Asi Asi Asi
Elkin y su Organo Electronico—El Burro
Elkin y su Organo Electronico—Fiesta y Parranda
Los Socios del Ritmo—Chilito Piquin
Chico Sonido—A Bailar

Day 7: Memo Rios

Nacho Cheese: a form of processed cheese mixed with peppers and other spices which is often used in place of  REAL shredded cheese in institutional or large-scale production settings, such as schools, movie theaters, sports venues, whore houses in Tijuana, night clubs in the Zona Rosa, or wherever using freshly grated beats & breaks may be logistically prohibitive. Such processed cheese is referred to in the United States as “nacho cheese”, or just “queso“. Originally formulated as a cheaper and more convenient source of cheese to top nachos. Unlike many different types of cheeses, “nacho cheese” bears no geographical indication or other regulated guarantee of ingredients, process, or quality, beyond the general legal definition for cheese products as established by Supersonido.net

1. Memo Rios: Muy Delgada ( Ice Ice Baby )

2. Memo Rios: En La Discoteca

Los Olvidados Part 1

I have a bunch of saved drafts I started, and for some reason or another, they were never published. This is one of them. Los Olividados = the forgotten ones.  If I were to ever sample a Perez Prado song, I would use the song Tabu off his 1957 RCA album Latin Satin.  Oh shit…..wait……oh man!!! It’s already been done by the avant-garde group Nurse With Wound on their rare 1996 500 vinyl-only release called Alice the Goon.  Damn!

1. Perez Prado: Tabu

2. Nurse With Wound: (I Don’t Want to Have) Easy Listening Nightmares

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