Author Archives: tonybonez

Sessa (Boiled) Grandeza

Enchanting Brazilian vocals and sweet instrumentals make this a dreamy escape. It definitely has a classic feel, but there are some really creative musical compositions, mostly minimal but at times multi-layered. Soft guitars, horns, hand drums, and backing vocals make this a dynamic release! Try: 1,4,7,10,11  RIYL: Palm Wine Music, The Gilberto family, Portuguese,  FCC: None

Kalumet (Hawaii Bonsai) Transatlantic Locomotive

Described as “Cumbia Dub Acid Tropical Bass Danse” and it’s REALLY good! This release has more of a trance feel but still has the traditional Andean instruments in each song (pan flute, accordion, hand drums, clarinet) It definitely has a darker fatter nubbier feel than other Tropical bass – so good! Try: 1,2,4,5,7  RIYL: Tropical Bass, […]

Amambay 100.000 (Hawaii Bonsai) Volá

More amazing Amazonica from this great label. Gritty female vocals sing passionately over an awesome blend of traditional instruments and modern bass. This release sounds more classic and has less production than others; more of a roots sound for sure. Incredible bass, hand drums, accordion, and pan flute keep this sounding organic and minimal. Try: 1,3,5,6,9,10  […]

Vusi Mahlasela (ATO) Shebeen Queen

“South African Folk Master” gives us a beautiful live album. His skill on the guitar combined with the character in his voice make this a real treat. He sings of his birthplace and the things that make South Africa great in this deeply personal album from a master. Try: 2,3,5,6,9,11  RIYL: African Musical Legends, Hugh Masekela, […]

Toots & The Maytals (BMG) Got To Be Tough

Reggae OG family at 77 Years old and still making great music! Zak Starkey, Ringo Star, and Ziggy Marley have their fingerprints on this album as well. Solid reggae and the man is in good voice! Really nice variety of tunes on this album, with political themes in the lyrics Try: 1,3,5,8,  RIYL: Bob Marley, Peter […]

Mielycumbia (Hawaii Bonsai) G.B.A. III

Slammin’ Tropical Bass! Great traditional Cumbia and Amazonica with phat beats. Accordion, Clarinet, Congas/hand drums, Pan flutes and more folk instruments combined with modern bass and production make the a HOT release. Limited vocals, every song is a dance party! Try: ALL  RIYL: Tropical Bass, Hawaii Bonsai, Cumbia Moderno FCC: None *TBs Faves

Mestizo Beat (GottaGroove) Canoga Madness

This is everything great about jazz-funk! It sounds like an album straight outta the 60s/70s with that porn funk sound – so good! Every song is an instrumental funk odyssey played by masters. Try: 1,2,4,6,8,9,10  RIYL: Porn Funk, Brownout, Shaft FCC: None *TBs Faves

Maldito Final Feliz (Hawaii Bonsai) La Ciudad de Color

High energy latin dance music! Cumbia, Reggaeton, Hip Hop, EDM, Salsa, Tropical Bass all represented here. Another great release from an amazing label! Try: 1,3  RIYL: Latin Electronica, Reggaeton, Tropical Bass, Hawaii Bonsai FCC: None *TBs Faves

Keleketla! (Ahead of Our Time) Keleketla!

South African duo Rangoato Hlasane and Malose Malahlela combine forces with Coldcut fro Britain to give us an eclectic album that transcends genre. There is a strong Afrobeat sound, mixed with modern blips, bass, and bleeps with traditional vocals at the forefront. Really fun danceable stuff here! Try: 1,2,3,8 RIYL: Angelique Kidjo, Coldcut, Fela Kuti, FCC: […]

IZADORÄ (Hawaii Bonsai) Sol Edad

Even though this album has 6 versions of the same song, they each have their own unquie flavor and style, which makes it feel more like a cohesive album when listened back to back. While each one has its own personality, you get beautiful spanish vocals, great bass, and a perfect blend of traditional and […]

Falle Nioke (Prah recordings) Youkounkoun EP

West African soulful vocals, mixed with well produced dance music backing. Perfect showcase of EDM and traditional vocals/instrumentation. Upbeat synths make this a really fun exploration! Sounds like it could be from the 80s. Try: ALL RIYL: William Onyeabor, African Dance, 80s Synth Funk FCC: None *TBs Faves

Faauna (Hawaii Bonsai) Tropicalypsis Now

Another great release from my fav record label! More incredible Tropical Bass, blending dubstep and slammin’ bass with cumbia, EDM, and traditional instrument accents from the Amazon. These tunes have a harder edge at times that reminds me of Brazilian funk, but there are also songs that feel like dub, reggaeton, and hard hitting dance […]

Emancipator (Loci) Mountain of Memory

Quote from the artist sums this up best, “Mid-tempo dance grooves, solid boom bap hip-hop beats and calm, reflective tempos blend with electric and acoustic guitars, classical violin, Persian dilruba, cimbaloms, finger snaps, symphonic strings, bubbling water, Latin and African hand drumming, music boxes, Baroque flutes and opera singers, who add unexpected vocal ornamentations to […]

El Extravagante (Hawaii Bonsai) Multiverso Tropical

Quote from the artist sums this up best, “Inspired by psychedelia, surrealism and referring to the theories of quantum physics about multiple parallel Universes, the EP ¨Multiverso Tropical¨ was born with 5 songs that play with the aesthetics of the Amazonian Cumbia sound, Psychedelic Rock, Dembow and Acid, 100% for the dancefloor.” Try: All RIYL: […]

Ceu (6 Degrees) APKA!

5th album from this Brazilian songstress. Each song is its own musical treat, with many styles and feels represented here. Her beautiful voice holds it all together, both classic and contemporary. Try 1,2,6,8,9,10 RIYL: Portuguese, great Female vocalists, modern Brazilian FCC: None

Buscabulla (SR) Regresa

Translates as “Troublemaker”, Puerto Rican duo give us an album about returning home from NYC to PR in the midst of political and environmental strife. Fun music that blends beautiful, yet quirky, Spanish female vocals with innovative and familiar electro-rock vibes. Try: 1,2,3,6,7,11 RIYL: Major Lazer & DJ Snake – Lean On (feat. MØ) FCC: None

Bebel Gilberto (PIAS Recordings) Agora

Brazilian Legend gives us a beautiful and classic sounding album; the first in over 6 years!  Her voice is perfect and the accompanying music is a great compliment – well produced with some modern filters and tricks, but it’s still the voice you love. Despite having dealt with loss, this has an uplifting tone. Try […]

Thievery Corporation (ESL) Symphonik

A must for fans!  They took some of their best tunes and reimagined them all! The vocalists have all changed and some are better than others, and they added lots of great classical instruments, strings, etc. Try: 1,3,4,7,9,10 RIYL: Sexy Eclectic World, great Female vocalists. FCC: None *TBs Faves

PHISH (JEMP) Sigma Oasis

Local Legend’s 15th studio album and released after almost 40 years of playing together! A welcome treat for Phans and some very accessible material for newcomers as well. As for much of their later releases, it has musically maturity that reflects a band that has spent a lot of time playing; it’s tight musically with […]

The Bongo Hop (TheUnderdogRecords) Satingarona Part 2

Very groovy mix of sexy vox with Afrobeat, disco, funk, samba, and jazz. An eclectic mix of world influences and great musicians make this a fantastic release! Try: 1,2,3, 5,7,8 ALL RIYL: Brazilian music, Afrobeat, eclectic world, Quantic FCC: None *TBs Faves

Lee Scratch Perry (Megawave) Rootz Reggae Dub

The Legend is back with another release, this time collaborating with “Spacewave, working with backing musicians Speak Easy. Adding percussion from Larry McDonald and backing harmonies from Detroit-based female trio Dames Brown and The Groovematist.” Try: 1,6,11,12 RIYL: Spoken Word, Dub, FCC: None

Dirtwire (Swamptronic Records) Electric River

Another amazing release from Dirtwire! “The 10 track deep album is stacked with standouts and sounds from an array of instruments to create the classic African ngoni and jawharp plucking, harmonica, electric guitar slinging, violin and banjo bowing, blues singing, Siberian ghostcatcher playing trio of cowboys signature sound.” Try: 1,3,5,7,9,10 RIYL: Folktronica, Beats Antique, Toubab Krewe FCC: […]

Steel Pulse (Rootfire Cooperative) Mass Manipulation

40 years of music from these guys, their first album in 15 years, and they still got it! Upbeat and positive vibes here, with some great tracks. Heartfelt, passionate, and political this album makes up for any lost time. 14 is a good cover of Higher Love! Try: 1,2,3,8,11,14 RIYL: Classic Reggae Bands, Positive Vibes, Consciousness FCC: […]

Various Artists (Tropical Twista) Mamazonia : Odes to the Forest – Vol​.​2

Three of South America’s best Electronic labels came together for this special album to raise $$ and awareness about the Rainforest. Voodoohop, Shika-Shika and Tropical Twista Records all represent the best of their labels on this album. Try: 2,3,4,6,7,9,13,14  RIYL: Tropical Bass, Hawaii Bonsai Records, Latin RPM FCC: None *TBs Faves

Collie Buddz (Harper Digital) Hybrid

3rd studio album from Bermudian dancehall artist. Pretty much what you would expect from him at this point… Some very catchy tunes here. Some good collabos on the record as well; if you like him, you will love this one. Try: 1,2,3,4,5,  RIYL: Dancehall, Autotuned vocals, Poppy Reggae FCC: None