Tokyo-based ten-piece and wild Japanese folk-song fusionists, Minyo Crusaders join forces with Colombian cumbia radicals Frente Cumbiero on the history-making Minyo Cumbiero, the first ever Japanese-Colombian collaborative release, and one that fuses ancient Japanese folk songs with heavyweight Colombian styles. Recorded across two days in Bogota in August 2019 Minyo Cumbiero includes versions of an ancient Japanese rap tune, modern cumbia standard and 1980s’ Chinese computer game theme-song and captures a thrilling exchange between two radical and triumphant groups. Japan and Colombia may be cultural opposites on different sides of the world, yet the countries are bursting at the seams musically and on this EP both groups stridently drive their respective music cultures and histories in exciting new directions with powerhouse horn sections, rippling dub basslines and rampant Afro-Latin polyrhythms creating carnival grooves, released here via London-based label, Mais Um.
For an uncompromisingly contemporary and inventive take on traditional Colombian cumbia, look no further than Frente Cumbiero. Headed by Colombian songwriter and producer Mario Galeano Toro (also a founding member of Ondatrópica and Los Pirañas), the Bogota-based crew have spearheaded Colombia’s thriving new-look cumbia movement for well over a decade, fusing cumbia rhythms and bass weight electronics with releases featuring collaborations with the legendary London-based dub producer, Mad Professor and US-based Kronos Quartet.