Weekly Mezcolanza: Funktion RMX

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A mixtape can be many things, but one thing is for sure, a mixtape is more than just random songs put in a particular order. It’s about recontextualizing sounds, giving them a new meaning (sometimes very different from the original) by setting them side by side, or juxtapozed in ingenious ways with others. Best thing about mixtapes, most of them are FREE (!), and they’re a great way to discover new music. In this column, Juan Data gives you a worthy one every week.

MIXTAPE: Cumbia Murdahtron
DJ: Funktion RMX

Nowadays, some DJs release mixtapes like hens lay eggs. Others show a little more dedication and put together some artwork to escort the mix. Few, however, have such an impressive body of work matched with mind-blowing visual presentation as Funktion RMX. Just look at his personal Web site and the covers of his many mixtapes and how professional they look…it almost makes you wanna pay for the downloads! Crazy concept, right?

For a French DJ who specializes in dubstep and drum-n-bass, Funktion has dropped a consistent handful of interesting cumbia-centric mixes, all of them with outstanding covers, but nothing like his latest output, Cumbia Murdahtron. Done on commission for the French world-beat blog Le Gouter, Cumbia Murdahtron starts with groggy sonideras rebajadas and builds up its tempo toward the digital new school cumbia during its hour-plus-change length. Not all the blends are right on point and some of them are downright abrupt, which suggests that it was recorded as a live set, so kudos for that.

There’s definitely an over-abundance of cumbia mixtapes available out there, but with such a presentation, this one is irresistible. And just for the fact that it’s coming from an outsider to the scene and the culture, you can at least trust it as a refreshing perspective. Plus, it’s FREE!