Roots & Early Electropical

3 Jan

I don’t know what to really call this music: global bass, nucumbia, electro cumbia. I like electropical because the name describes what the music is – tropical beats with electronic elements.

I have been trying to find music like this since about 2000.  This list is a bit of my journey. I hope you like it.  And please comment with friendly additions!

Señor Coconut

This was the first example of this type of music I found. It was 2000 or 2001.  I was in Lubbock, TX, and I wanted more of this!

Trans Europe Express (Cumbia) – Señor Coconut

For me, the whole album by Senor Coconut, aka Atom Heart, is a classic, though Pitchfork only gave it a 6.0 when it was released.  Señor Coconut Y Su ConjuntoEl Baile Aleman

Nortec Collective

I found this music while in Mexico, listening to the radio. For those who don’t know of Nortec, the word is a combination of Norteño and techno. Nortec has several albums and they still tour.

Classic stuff…

Bostich – Tengo la Voz

Surtek Collective

Here we see Atom Heart again, this time as a part of Surtek Collective. Taking acid to make music, to take acid, to make music…..

Surtek – El Cumbiaton



Sidestepper fed my soul for several years. I can’t wait for their new album!

Me Gustas (No Me Disgustas)


La Paloma


Instituto Mexicano del Sonido

IMS is also known by their English acronym, MIS – the Mexican Institute of Sound.  MIS crashed my party in 2006 with sounds like this!

Instituto Mexicano Del Sonido Escribeme Pronto


The next four songs aren’t necessarily electro, but I think they are important in the progression of electropical. They are important because these songs reimagined and amplified the inherent sounds of cumbias and norteñas.


Ozomatli – Cumbia de los Muertos


Café Tacvba – El Fin de la Infancia


Celso Piña & Control Machete – Cumbia Sobre el Rio


El Gran Silencio – Chúntaro Style 


Bersa Discos

This record label has been releasing dope compilations since 2007.  This next song is from their first compilation.

El Hijo de la Cumbia – La Mara Tomaza


ZZK is the super-label from Buenos Aires, Argentina, who now work their management through Waxploitation.  The label includes Mati Zundel, Fauna, La Yegros, Frikstailers, Chancha Via Circuito, and the list goes on. This label is super incredible badass.

This first mixtape from ZZK has low audio quality, but if you listen to it all, I’m sure you will hear something you like!

Please visit and play around on the ZZK website. You will fall in love!

other place to go digging for sounds…


Mad Decent




Sol Selectas



–          Brian Galaviz aka DJ Chapulin



One Response to “Roots & Early Electropical”

  1. Brotha Onaci January 6, 2013 at 5:34 pm #

    Reblogged this on Brotha Onaci and commented:
    This is written by my good bro and fellow People’s DJ, Chapulin!

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