Vicente Amigo – “Morao”
I’ve been listening to Vicente Amigo since around 1996 or so and I’m always fascinated by his way of playing Flamenco. Sometimes the rhythms can get crazily complex but the melodies are so intense and reach out to me on another level.
Smoke City – “Giulietta – Interlude No 2”
Nina Miranda’s voice is so seductive, ASMR next to this is nothing!
Aphex Twin – “Alberto Balsalm”
Little could we imagine as a bunch of teens living in Sintra, Portugal… while listening to Aphex Twin… that he was to become one of the biggest references in electronic music. His weirdness was and still is very amusing and on top of that, he is able to create the most mesmerizing melodies.
The Cinematic Orchestra – “Flite”
The album “Every Day” is so ingrained into my subconscious that at times I tend to forget how important it was for my musical upbringing. It flows in a such a natural way that you almost forget it’s there!
Doctor Rockit – “Café de Flore”
Mathew Herbert’s alter ego… this song is for the dreamers.
Bau – “Raquel”
If I had to encapsulate in one song the complexity of the Lusophone world, this song would be the one. It is very hard to describe, but any Portuguese speaker will mostly relate to at least one element of this composition. It’s amazing how much good music comes out of this little island in the Atlantic Ocean, Cape Verde.
Burial – “Ghost Hardware”
When you combine melancholy and that unmistakable UK Garage vibe, you have to think about the elusive Burial. His influence on today’s electronic music is huge.
Four Tet – “Sing (Floating Points Remix)
This remix is so perfect, Floating Points just did a masterpiece here. And I also have to ‘shout out’ Four Tet as for staying relevant in the scene for so long. Amazing music by both.
Floating Points – “Sais”
Floating Points made it twice in this list, but this track is also a thing of beauty.
Nils Frahm – “Sunson”
Hands down, the best album of 2018. Berlin’s Funkhaus vibes are all over the place! This is a future classic…
Toada – Airosa Melanina EP (Plūma Records) (digital) / Plū001 (vinyl)
Toada is a Berlin-based Portuguese producer who started under this alias—which is intended mainly to be a live act—in 2015. Emotional melodies, combined with forwardnthinking, playful rhythms define the project, it is a unique musical venture providing a place where Northern and Southern European influences meet to superb effect.
Big support from Lux Frágil resident Rui Vargas has followed previous releases, and the first track here came after the artist went though some defining personal experiences leading to him reflecting on the nature of melanin and its role in shaping “social hierarchies.” Opener ‘Airosa’ is the Portuguese word for elegant or delicate, but also proud, and is a suitably beautiful track with gentle hang drums tumbling over the softest of rhythms. Yawning chords drift around the groove and the whole thing is utterly soothing,thoughtful and mesmerising.
Then comes ‘Melanina’, with a drunken lead synth line taking the lead over further smooth sashaying drums. Warming pads add scale and lilting percussion helps move things along, but this is another cerebral and emotive track that really makes you think. These are two superbly musical offerings that will bring genuine moments of emotion and reflection to any setting in which they are heard.
Toada – Airosa Melanina EP (Plūma Records) Release: 11th January 2019 Cat No: Plū003 (digital) / Plū001 (vinyl)
You can find many of these tracks on my Spotify playlist: