From Dark Dembow to Merenpunk: Preview Bodega Island Music Festival With This Playlist

Photo by Joened López. Courtesy of Mula

New York City is about to witness a new edition of Bodega Island Music Festival, the self-described “biggest and dopest indie, merengue, alt, bachata, punk music festival in the world.” Taking place on Saturday, September 9 at The Paper Box in Brooklyn’s East Williamsburg neighborhood, the lineup is comprised almost entirely of Dominican acts, who skillfully collide traditional sounds and rhythms from Quisqueya and rework them to fit their own style.

You’ll definitely find our Apple Music Before You Go playlist helpful for navigating all these sounds, especially as you warm up for the big day. The El General sample that opens Maluca’s “Trigger” guarantees this is meant to be a party playlist. Dark dembow trio MULA’s merengue throwdown “Diamantes” quickly follows. Happy Colors also makes an appearance, and he’s behind two of the most club-ready tracks on the playlist, right alongside Magic Juan and Los Dutis. Hecho En Brooklyn and La Gran Mawon flirt with merengue here, and so does Boom Box Repair Kit, which features festival organizer and Bodega Island label head Lael Llaverías, who gives the Talking Heads’ “Psycho Killer” a Dominican makeover. Jobo brings Afro-Caribbean soul and international cumbia lovers Los Coulters round out the list. Get your portable hookah stick ready and fire up this playlist in preparation for a night of ass-clapping.

Bodega Island Music Festival goes down Saturday, September 9 from 9 p.m. to 4 a.m. at The Paper Box in Brooklyn. For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.