Radio Zumbido - Los Últimos Días del AM
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Radio Zumbido
Los Últimos Días del AM
Palm Pictures

cd cover Guatemala's volcanic Lake Atitlán might seem an unlikely wellspring of the enthralling planetary sound collage of Radio Zumbido, but under the experimental wizardry of guitarist and songwriter Juan Carlos Barrios, Radio Zumbido samples and filters the variegated ambient reverberations of Central America and beyond in a disorienting, thoroughly contemporary global broadcast. If the resulting aural pastiche defies categorical location, it's a bemused reflection of influences as diverse as Garifuna drumming and African-Caribbean percussion, cheap dance halls and the sleazy pursuits pertaining thereto, cackling chickens on an endless bus ride between highland Indian towns, interplanetary static, samples of Ruben Blades reflecting upon a music-filled childhood, kids carousing in the street, cool jazz, hipster groove, techno indifference, airy woodwinds, cranky keyboards, classical meets fuzz-tone guitar, ethereal brass, sounding bells, a cornucopia of canned radio snippets, and oblique nods to the Cuban Revolution and Jorge Luis Borges. Indeed, the Borges universe (leavened with a sinus-blasting snort of yage, William Burroughs on a terminal nod) seems apt enough as a metaphysics to characterize the peculiar and perfidious acoustic enticements of Radio Zumbido. Sonic flotsam from the extraterrestrial, coming soon to a clandestine frequency near you, a cosmic dance transmission for the ages whose improvising past is your untracked future, this way please, from another planet not unlike your own, last call for boarding. - Michael Stone

Available at cdroots

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