global posts


Tuesday, July 24th, 2007 by Paul Irish

brazilian fusion // bossa

Just when you think that Brazil must have surely exhausted its supply of irresistibly jazzy, funky, sexy, soulful electro-pop singer-songwriters, a girl named CéU comes along to release an irresistible album full of samba, reggae, dub, electronica, love, heartbreak, chaos and sweet tunefulness. Her influences start with her musicologist father and spread out to genres like valsa, choro, soul, rhythm and blues, hip hop, afrobeat and electrojazz. Isn’t it obvious this deserves a spot on Aurgasm? :)

Quite a mature sound for this Brazilian songstress’ debut
CéU – Rainha
buy this cd


Wednesday, April 4th, 2007 by Paul Irish

brazilian folk // electronic indie

If you’ve been paying attention Cibelle (see-BELL-ee) has already caught your attention, I’m a little late on this but didn’t want to not post this songstress. São Paulo raised Cibelle crafts tunes that tell stories embellished by an instrumentation that won’t disappoint; ½ her album was produced by ½ of indie folk outfit Tunng. Her approach to song construction (somewhat explained on her myspace) reminds me of The Books and Psapp. You won’t hear her lovely vocals in Portuguese in the songs below, but that’s a treat, just the same.

Innovating on old-world beauty.
Cibelle – Waiting
Cibelle – Green Grass
Cibelle – London, London (feat. Devendra Banhart) (video)
buy this cd

A World Remixed

Monday, December 11th, 2006 by Paul Irish

world dance // latin chill // flamenco remixed

Today I’ve got a pair of worldly remixes featured as part of National Geographic Music’s new presence at the most-excellent Calabash Music. (Entirely DRM-free mp3s, natch). The Nortec Collective used to get press from Time and the sort; they’re a large group of Latin Americans that mash together some energetic panamerican beats. Most of their stuff comes off as repetitive to me, but Rosco tempers their excitement into a chill downtempo groove. (One which deserves a spot in the next Nip/Tuck episode.) Then in the second track, Ojos de Brujo’s hip hop flamenco meets Nitin Sawhney’s asian underground treatment.

Well-produced worldly beats.
Nortec Collective – Olvidela Compa (Rosco Remix)
Ojos de Brujo – Feedback (Nitin Sawhney Remix)
buy this


Wednesday, November 15th, 2006 by Paul Irish

latin arabian // moroccan

Being that you’re a fully committed Aurgasm reader, you’re no doubt fully fluent in the cuban music subgenre son. Not could you only write a four page paper on how the mountainous geography of Cuban affected the flat city of Havana’s music culture, but you’ve also forced your friends to watch the Buena Vista Social Club movie several times. Well today I’ve got a Moroccan version of Compay Segundo, god rest his soul. Rhany brings the full force of Buena Vista’s “Chan Chan” along with an Arabian twist.

Cuban beauty with Moroccan flair.
Rhany – Chan Chan (Buena Vista Social Club Cover)

Buena Vista Social Club – Chan Chan

buy this cd

Toumani Diabate’s Symmetric Orchestra

Saturday, September 2nd, 2006 by Andrew Ladd

african folk // kora // mali beat

From the liner notes:

The Symmetric Orchestra reflects the spirit of Mali’s new democracy since 1992— a spirit of equality, and creativity. There’s a public in Mali today that loves traditional music — griot music — but not the griot milieu. With the Symmetric, they feel free to enjoy this music without the obligations of tradition. And this gives us the freedom to present the tradition in new ways.

That quote is enough, I’m sure, to make any Cultural Studies critics reading wet themselves, and I’m going to give them a little more: TDSO is one of those deftly textured creations that evokes equal parts timeless and contemporary, diffuse and situated. Try listening to the soft chants on ‘Mamadou Diaby’ without thinking of Four Tet, and the virtuoso piano on ‘Africa Challenge’ without hearing the tango. It’s beautiful.

A well-crafted blend of all-over sounds.
Toumani Diabate’s Symmetric Orchestra – Mamdou Diaby
Toumani Diabate’s Symmetric Orchestra – Africa-Challenge
buy this cd

Captain Planet

Wednesday, July 19th, 2006 by Paul Irish

dance funk // world breakbeat

Hopefully by now you’ve dropped by Captain’s Crate, the blog of Charlie Bethel, aka NYC’s Captain Planet. The Cap’n has been pushing his eclectic and diverse soundset at parties across The Big Apple for years. His sound is similar to the upbeat jams from Nickodemus, The Theivery Corporation, and Quantic, taking in the best of afrobeat, samba, dancehall, hip hop and house. ‘The Don’ is off his recently released Gumbo Funk EP and features a tight amalgamation of world dance music with serious ass-shaking bounce to it.

They say, “a cross-cultural cornucopia of sound.” I say, straight fire.
Captain Planet – The Don (track 2 on the Aurgasm Summer Soundtrack)
buy this cd

Rodrigo y Gabriela

Sunday, June 11th, 2006 by Paul Irish

exotic world instrumental // flamenco guitar

Of all recommendations from my readers, R y G has been mentioned most frequently. This worldly and adoringly cute couple emerged from Mexico’s metal scene and now resides in Dublin, making music you’d expect from Argentina. Their trademark red-hot guitar technique and harmonies spark your attention, but the timeless songwriting holds you tight. ‘Tamacun’ and ‘Diablo Rojo’ are off their newest eponymous release, while the video of ‘Capitan Casanova’ below is from their 2004 live album.

Baristas, prepare to be hounded for what these songs are.
Rodrigo y Gabriela – Tamacun
Rodrigo y Gabriela – Diablo Rojo

Rodrigo y Gabriela – Capitan Casanova

buy this cd

Richard Galliano

Sunday, January 29th, 2006 by Paul Irish

french musette // accordion // tango

My first mental association with an accordion is my father playing christmas carrols on his, being so geeky it’s charming. But Richard Galliano has taken the accordion places I’d never imagine that old reedy squeezebox going. He revived the turn-of-the-century Parisan dancehall music known as musette which is often credited with introducing tango to the world. Once it hit the Paris scene in the 1930’s, as Paris was the center of fashion, it instantly became hip and spread. Galliano plays the works of his mentor, the tango great Astor Piazolla, with unmatched brilliance (‘Libertango’) as he does with the more traditional musette, ‘La Valse A Margaux’.
This ain’t your father’s squeezebox.

Richard Galliano – Libertango
Richard Galliano – La Valse a Margaux
buy this cd


Thursday, December 15th, 2005 by Paul Irish

bossa chill // acoustic // atmospheric downtempo

In 1997, Brighton-based duo Smoke City released “Underwater Love”, a Brazilian-flavored trip-hop tune which landed a great number of fans and ended up on over fifty compilations. The dreamy, sweet-tongued voice of vocalist Nina Miranda created the sharp allure and addictive quality of the track. Now, after some collaborations with Bebel Gilberto, Nitin Sawhney, and Da Lata, Nina joins eclectic producer Dennis Wheatley as Shrift. Together they create a seductive sound that transports you halfway between South America and wind-swept fantasy. Off their upcoming album, “Floating City” spins around you in a genre-fusing 6/8 rhythm and “As Far As I Can See” nails beautiful melody with little, deliberate instrumentation.
Effortless artistry from two worldly musicians.

Shrift – Floating City
Shrift – As Far As I Can See
buy this cd

DJ Kentaro

Wednesday, August 17th, 2005 by Paul Irish

japanese turntablism // traditional remixed

shamisen. n. 1. A Japanese 3-stringed musical instrument with a very long neck, plucked with a bachi (a binding of sticks).
turntable. n. 1. The circular horizontal rotating platform of a phonograph on which the record is placed.
Ready to see these two very different instruments bust out some crazy fusion of old and new?

Imagine a banjo player dueling with a DJ, in Japan…

DJ Kentaro mixing against a shamisen (skip to 0:40)