Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Buraka Som Sistema, world music, and Pythagoras

UPDATE: You can download a Buraka Som Sistema DJ mix here.

When people on these fruited plains from sea to shining sea say "world music," they usually just mean "music that comes from anywhere else," don't they? It pretends to describe something, but it describes what it's not. The term is all tied up in exoticism and American creation of the cultural "other."

After a vague attempt at defining the pseudo-genre ("Closely informed or guided by indigenous music"? Huh?), Wikipedia, in its infinite wisdom, clarifies:

World music does not include

First of all, something makes me think that the only reason reggae is omitted is that every home in the US has a copy of Legend.

Second of all, if the term "world music" wasn't already horrifically outdated, it is now.

In the Internet Age, geographic location plays a much smaller role in the development of your musical self. Case in point: Buraka Som Sistema. These kids make their own brand of "kuduro," a type of sample-heavy, energetic dance music which has been recently popularized in Portugal and Angola, or at least that's what the Internets say.

For those of us who have recently cut back on our weekend trips to Angola due to the financial crisis, there are some familiar musical touchstones in the mix: plenty of techno, plenty of drum n' bass, plenty of hip-hop, a little bit of crunk, a little bit of Baltimore club, a little bit of house? Growing up, these dudes listened to zouk and soca, but evidently also to Dr. Dre and Orbital. Their panglobal melting pot results in a sound that is distinctive, but also unafraid to cop good ideas from anywhere, whether it's Lisbon or Elizabeth, NJ. Betcha five dollars they were up on Napster or Audiogalaxy or Morpheus just a few years back, like the rest of us. Raise you a next generation of popular musicians who have no regard for genre, context, or historic authenticity.

Lil' John, one-third of the group, even does that thing that loads of B-more DJs do where they take a really short loop and repeat it over and over and then move to double time, then double the double time, then double that quadruple time, then faster and faster until it's not even music anymore, it's just noise, but who cares because Omar is holding a gun to your head and telling you to dance so you better fucking dance. Check out the minimix on Lil' John's personal Myspace if you don't know what I mean. He does it with "Crazy" at about 4:00, and in a bunch of other places.

Pythagoras, the ancient Greek philosopher/mathematican/theorist, is said to have cured a young man of his alcoholism through a modal melody. If you believe that's possible, then you better believe this shit will cure your sobriety real quick.

Oh yeah- and they're playing a DJ & MC set here at Santos this Thursday! What a crazy coincidence! It starts at 9PM, is $12 in advance, and $14 at the door.

Tickets can be bought online via Ticketweb.

Check out Buraka Som Sistema's Myspace. All four songs up there are absolute bone-crushing bangers, but "Sound of Kuduro" is even fucking beyond that. For serious.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

New York Press Award!

More praise! This time from Best Of Manhattan 2008: ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT

Best New Venue
Santos Party House
100 Lafayette St. (betw. Walker & White Sts.), 212-584-5492

Opened in May by a group of investors including party rocker Andrew WK and downtown impresario Spencer Sweeney, Santos is a dark open space that boasts a million-dollar sound system and a weekly schedule of parties that put it to good use. WK calls the space "a perfect physical representation of freedom," and says the club harkens back to the glory days of such legendary spots as the Cat Club in the 1980s and Life in the '90s. When we were there recently for a late-90s themed bash, skuzzy nu-ravers with dreads and rocker chicks with peeling nail polish danced together to New Order. The projectionist played a continuous loop of PiL-era Johnny Rotten above the stage. If the coolest kids you know opened a club, this would be it-though in this case you have to pay for beer.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

The Santos Party House Cheer

Santos Party House, in downtown Manhattan, New York City, is very pleased to present you with the official SANTOS PARTY HOUSE CHEER! The song can be downloaded for FREE at the official Santos Party House Myspace page: http://www.myspace.com/santaspartyhouse - it's the first song in the audio player. Just click "Download" for a free MP3.

And if you'd like to make your own remix of the song, simply email info@santospartyhouse.com and write, "Remix" in the subject. You will be sent links to download the songs elements (vocals, drum beat, keyboards) as individual .wav audio files. Then you can do whatever you want with the song! It's free for you to use and enjoy!

The "Santos Party House Cheer" was created by a non-physical entity, named SANTA SANTOS (the living spirit of New York City nightlife). The song was recorded by channeling SANTA SANTOS into musical form, via the partners of the Santos Party House club and venue.

Thursday, September 18, 2008


Many people seem to be taking notice of this fair Party House. Some of them publish magazines, which is cool! The L Magazine awards took place a few days ago. We were mentioned in EIGHT categories, and won three awards:

  • Best Place to See DJs Spin Vinyl
  • Best Venue
  • Best Dance Floor

What a fun, sexy time for us!

However, we were thankful to lose in one category: "Venue with the Most Pretentious Line-Companions." We don't think you're pretentious! We love your sensual, aloof stare!