Category World/International

Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra (PAPA) – Little Africa [The Village]

Jamael Dean’s piano and Sharada Shashidar’s vocals open this beautiful burner that introduces the Pan Afrikan Peoples Arkestra’s new label, The Village, to audiences for the first time. PAPA has been a breeding ground for the West Coast’s most daring and creative Black American Musicians. Infectious melodies and incredible collective improvisation.

MESTIZO BEAT – CANOGA MADNESS [CALIFORNIA SOUL]

Jump right into the soundtrack for an early 70s spy movie that will have you busting out both your salsa steps and your soul train moves. Mestizo Beat brings funk and groove with Nigerian, Ethiopian, and Cuban influence. Play, play, play! FCC: 3 TRY: 1, 4, 7 RIYL: Diggin’ Dirt, Black Market Brass, Jungle Fire

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, […]

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

CASELY – RUDE BOY SUMMER (FEAT. BRAVEBOY) (SINGLE) [SELF-RELEASED]

A summer dancehall track from Casely that will have your hips moving in no time. Casely may be a classically-trained pianist, but he clearly has an ear for catchy pop phrases, and has been known to collaborate with artists such as Flo Rida and Lil Jon. FCC: Clean RIYL: Razah, Young Steff, K-Young

MULATU ASTATKE & BLACK JESUS EXPERIENCE – TO KNOW WITHOUT KNOWING [AGOGO]

A mellifluous collection of Ethiopian melodies set to a variety of unique grooves. You’ll hear a fusion of Hip Hop, Jazz, Funk, and even some Reggae sounds. An excellent listen- play! FCC: Clean RIYL: Mahmoud Ahmed, Ebo Taylor, Girma Béyéné

LADAMA – OYE MUJER [SIX DEGREES]

An excellent new album from powerful, all-female group LADAMA. The record is a perfect balance of groove and meaningful lyrics that impart a call of action to women across the world to rise up and fight against the injustices of the world. The songs are sung in English, Spanish, and Portuguese, and feature a variety […]

Albaster dePlume–To Cy & Lee: Instrumentals Vol. 1

Multi-genre pieces for wavering sax with a wide variety of instruments–varied rhythms. Play!

Antibalas – Fu Chronicles [Daptone]

Antibalas is an Afrobeat band that began 22 years ago in pre-gentrified Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Founder saxaphonist Martin Perna and Duke Amayo a senior master of the Jao Ka Kung Fu school of matial arts are accompained by an 17 piece band. This EP has 3 cuts. Give a listen. Play: All Similar to: Karl Hector […]

A2VT – Twenty Infinity (Mercury Rising Music) [LOCAL]

A2VT is an Afropop group founded by African refugees in the Burlington area. Their latest album is all bright, shiny dance beats and hooks, with lyrics (in English, Swahili and Maay Maay) tackling both lighthearted and serious topics. Highly recommended! Track Picks: 1, 2, 4, 6, 8 FCC: Clean RIYL: Rema, Burna Boy, Wizkid