Your Mix Fix: Cuarto Poder

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The word mixtape has plenty of different interpretations. It used to be that mixtapes were actually DJ sets recorded on cassette tapes, but with the coming of the digital music age, the name remained the same, but the definition expanded. Nowadays, people call mixtapes many different things, some of which are not necessarily mixed and most of which were never taped. Here we try to cover them all. In this column, Juan Data gives you a worthy one every week.

DJ: Cuarto Poder

MIXTAPE: Cuarto Poder – Como En Vivo

Not a mix-tape in the sense we usually employ in this column, because there’s not one DJ mixing songs from different artists in one cohesive set. Here, mix-tape is used in the sense many hip-hop artist use the term nowadays to refer to their unofficial releases. I know, it’s not really mixed (and it’s not recorded on tape either, obviously), but that’s how they decided call it so it ends up fitting in this column. Como En Vivo, rather than a mix-tape, is Cuarto Poder‘s new EP, with four brand new full tracks and a couple of interludes. The production values and the recording quality are as good as their album, and paradoxically, the art that comes with it is way better. Even the title is way more imaginative than that unfortunate In Tha House that made them resemble Proyecto Uno-wannabes on their underrated Nacional Records debut a year or so ago. There’re some really tight beats and well crafted verses on this that will please even the most demanding purist rap-heads and none of that crossover-ready reggae singing of “Arenita Playita.” So in some sense this feels like an official release by Cuarto Poder, if they were aiming for the underground Spanish hip-hop fans instead of the heterodox Latin Alternative market. If they have more “mix-tapes” like this one up their sleeves, I say, keep ’em coming!

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