Tag Archives: Lagartijeando

This Week’s Essential Releases: Disco Punk, House, Ambient and More

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Welcome to Essential Releases, our weekly roundup of the best music on Bandcamp. Each week, we’ll recommend crucial new albums that were released between last Friday and this Friday, plus pick an older LP from the stacks that you may have missed.

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The Best Albums of 2017: #100 – 81

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We’ll be revealing the full list, 20 albums at a time, this whole week.

Last year, the Bandcamp Daily staff put together our first “Best Albums of the Year List,” 100 albums we felt defined 2016 for us. At the time I remember thinking, “This is tough, but it will probably get easier as the years go on.” Now, one year later, I’m realizing that I was wrong. The truth is, the world of Bandcamp is enormous, and it contains artists from all over the world, in every conceivable genre (including a few who exist in genres of their own invention), and at every stage of their career. The fact of the matter is, any list like this is going to fall short because, on Bandcamp, there is always more to discover. Right now, there’s probably someone in their bedroom in Buenos Aires, making a record on their computer that is going to end up on next year’s list. So as comprehensive as we’ve tried to make this list, we realize that, even at 100 albums, we’re only scratching the surface of what’s available. The albums that made this list, though, were the ones that stayed with us long after they were released—the ones we returned to again and again and found their pleasures undimmed, and their songs still rewarding.

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Andean Producer Lagartijeando’s Musical Witchcraft

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Mati Zundel, the Andean electro-folk alchemist who records as Lagartijeando, speaks of music as witchcraft, and connecting with other life forms through the use of psychoactive plants. This might seem “delirious,” as he suggested during our Skype call, but the zest and fire in his voice brings a prickling of gooseflesh; to Zundel, this is all very real. As he goes on, it begins to sound like the charming producer/multi-instrumentalist has reached some point of self-actualization. He recalls his backpacking journeys, and stints spent integrating himself with indigenous tribes in South American villages, and times when he befriended trendy producers in megalopolises, experiences that allowed him to develop an encyclopedic knowledge of folkloric and modern music.

Zundel has just returned from a local event called Fiesta de la Guitarra, where regional music is celebrated: “There’s gauchos, payadas, chacareras, samba, chamamé, vidala, copla…I love to see this!” he enthuses. That festival takes place in his native Dolores—a tiny hinterland of 20,000 habitants that’s just a 125-mile drive away from Buenos Aires. This marks his fourth years back home after a three-year globetrotting venture, and he’s enjoying the bucolic lifestyle of being back home. Dolores is also where he recorded his latest effort, the jubilant and meditative El Gran Poder.

On the album, it’s clear that his intrepid journeys provided him with a wealth of musical knowledge. The record fuses blissful electronic ambience with nostalgic pan flutes (or siku) and jaunty charangos, most of which he arranged and performed himself. Zundel talked with us about the mysticism behind ícaros—sacred chants that are sung during indigenous, spiritual ceremonies: “If you listen to my music, there are elements that search and call for that, they ask for protection,” he offers.

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This Week’s Seven Essential Releases

Seven Essential Releases

Welcome to Seven Essential Releases, our weekly roundup of the best music on Bandcamp. Each week, we’ll recommend six new albums, plus pick older LP from the stacks that you may have missed.

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