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Global Music Column – December

Various Artists – Perú Selvático: Sonic Expedition Into the Peruvian Amazon 1972-1986

Anchored in hip-swaying, syncopated clave rhythm and topped with bright flute melodies, cumbia music has a centuries-old history. Originating from Colombia, its mid-tempo sound is now a staple in Latin America, and a new compilation from Analog Africa highlights an overlooked subgenre that flourished throughout 1970s and 80s Peru: cumbia Amazonica.


Amid the heat and humidity of the Peruvian jungle a group of bands developed their own psychedelic take on the folk tradition, gleaned from patchy radio broadcasts of popular cumbia music and black market vinyl imports, which featured fast-paced percussion, electric guitars and heady reverb. Across the 18 tracks of Perú Selvático, this frenetic dance music unfurls, bringing new life to a largely forgotten sound.


Read the review in the Guardian.


[This piece was published on 02/12/22]

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