Fall 2009, Washington DC:
a high-schooler asks his cousin, a well-respected electro DJ, to play a set at one of his school-skipping parties. The DJ shows up that morning and finds a crowded basement going wild – to reggaeton. “I’m thinking, fuck I cant play house/techno shit, I’ll get jumped.” So he slows the bleepy dutch electro track “Moombah” way down, to a reggaeton-mixeable 108 beats per minute, and drops it. The party goes off, so he tries another slowed-down electro banger, and the dancefloor explodes again. Fifteen minutes later the cops arrive to break things up. The DJ drives his cousin back to school to catch his afternoon classes.
The DJ was Dave Nada of Nadastrom. Instead of passing that morning off as a fluke, he took the slowed-down sound and got to work in the studio. March 2010, Nada emerged with the first EP of Moombahton. He calls it “mid-tempo global bass music for the universe.”
A year’s gone by, and it seems like Moombahton’s here to stay – thanks to support from artists around the world, Radio One DJs like Toddla T and Mary Anne Hobbes, and a growing base in LA (Nada’s new hometown, where he’s partying hard to support the new sound). Diplo’s Mad Decent imprint has just given the genre its first commercial release, and DJs from Crookers to Sinden are dropping it in their sets.
One cool thing about Moombahton is that, to date, most of the tracks are available for free in a series of seasonal compilations-
Munchi’s Summer of Moombahton (@Generation Bass)
David Heartbreak’s Fall of Moombahton (@Mad Decent)
DJ Melo’s Winter of Moombahton (@Mad Decent)
What’s it sound like? If you’re coming from listening/dancing to house tempo 4/4 music (like I was) Moombahton can feel awkward and sluggish at first. Try listening to a whole mix (Brodinski’s European Introduction to Moombahton @Mad Decent
) and the groove gets infectious fast – the slower tempo leaves breathing space for tropical percussion and big electro synths. It’s sexy.
Watch out for Moombahton on rooftops this summer in Shanghai.
DJ Ayres interview with Dave Nada
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