2016 in tropical music

Ok, so I guess this needs (and deserves) an explanation. Since October 2015 I have been hosting a weekly radio show on Radio Luz in Wrocław, Poland which is called Basy Tropikalne and is all about tropical music. The name of the show means – at least more or less – tropical bass but at the same time it is a kind of wordplay in Polish as by exchanging only one letter you obtain lasy tropikalne – and that means tropical forests. The reason I am mentioning this is because the name of the show can be in fact somehow misleading as it may suggest that a genre called tropical bass is in the centre of my attention. But it is not. Of course it may appear and most certainly has appeared few times in the tracklist of some of the shows but Basy Tropikalne brings definitely many more sounds.

What is tropical music for me then? Well, I have not come up with any elaborate definitions. Instead of that I am just looking for music which has been either produced in Latin America or Africa (or any other tropical region) or which contains traditional elements of cultures from that areas or whose authors come from those distant parts of the world. In fact, if there is any decent connection between the sound itself or its producers and a particular tropical region – such composition may make it to the show.

The list you can see below is a very brief summary of what happened in 2016 in tropical music from my perspective. Since I am very much a single person this list is brutally limited and without any doubts incomplete but it contains almost everything that I think is worth mentioning – it can be a song, an album or something else. There are no specific places as you simply cannot compare gqom to digital cumbia. The order is also completely random, just to make it fair (for the eagle-eyed among you – yes, it’s a little bit chronological). Enjoy and have a tropical 2017.

basy_tropikalne

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Top 100 tracks of 2015

End-year list with the best tracks is a must so here we go. To my surprise, there are twenty-two compositions that are longer than six minutes and one that is shorter than two minutes. There is also one remix. One artist appears three times (like Orbital in 2012) but his album as a whole was actually somehow disappointing. There is also one musician who is featured for the fourth year in a row (and it is a woman). You can check out the previous charts by clicking ‘the best of osom’ above.

Enjoy and have a happy 2016.

Autrenoir – Nuit

Remember Mondkopf? This master of monumental and dark techno is back after last year’s album Hadès but he is not alone now – for a new project called Autrenoir he has joined forces with a fellow Frenchman Greg Buffier. This is not the first time these two cooperate as Mondkopf has already released a collaborative track Last Love which was recorded back in 2012 together with Saåad, a drone duo in which Buffier plays guitar.

Although Autrenoir have even played some gigs in the past, Nuit is their first ever officially published song. It is a deep and brain stimulating composition with majestic atmosphere that accumulates slowly towards the end of the track and eventually turns into a disturbing drone structure. To immerse fully into this dark world of instrumental electronic music, you should listen to Nuit while watching the fantastic accompanying video that has been made by As Human Pattern.

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AL-90 – CODE-915913

Fuselab, a label that is a home to OSOM favourites Galun and Ishome, seems to have rebranded itself. There is a new logo, website and apparently also a new musical direction. Fortunately – and most importantly – the change is not drastic as their releases still possess that appealing factor that have been making the previous ones particularly valuable and it is proved by the newest position in their catalogue which is a full-length album CODE-915913 by Russian artist AL-90.

The Murmansk-based musician debuted last year with an album for UK label Reckno in which he presented his interpretation of house music which is now known as so called post-house or tape-house. This fresh genre is characterized by deep and dreamy compositions with beats that are somehow slightly muted to create a peaceful atmosphere. Have a listen below!

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Daze – Neuromance

You simply cannot go wrong with the music from Lobster Theremin’s catalogue. This London based label absolutely nailed it last year with a magnitude of fantastic techno stuff and it turns out that they are still pushing it forward in 2015. Their newest release is a title track Neuromance which is taken from the upcoming three-track EP by an Australian producer Daze who has already published some of his work via Lobster Theremin last summer. His fresh composition is a monumental over nine minutes long tune with pulsing bass and a dreamy melody in the background. We will have to wait till March to hear the rest of the EP but you can pre-order the vinyl right now.

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