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Boomkat Product Review:
Stunning CD/DVD package of 17 original Afro-Peruvian recordings made in spring 2010 by Secret Stash label owners Eric Foss and Cory Wong. It comes not long after their ace 'Peruvian Funk' LP but documents a rather more unique and entirely indigenous sound which has been in evolution ever since the first Spanish conquistadors brought West African slaves to the mines and plantations of Peru some 500 years ago. Despite being stripped of their traditional musical instruments the displaced population developed a complex percussive music based around a style of precise foot tapping called Zapateo, which eventually gave way to the Cajón, basically a wooden box struck rhythmically which gives much of Afro-Peruvian music its distinctive hollow, sharp, percussive resonance. Nowadays those base rhythms have become fused with ornate Latin guitar and Spanish lyrics, but this is still a very distinct strand of the Afro-Latin diaspora unique to this region. Most of the songs you'll encounter were recorded using "Guerilla Recording Tactics", namely tracking in classrooms, offices, balconies or simply on the street, at once stripping the illusion of studio magic, and hugely increasing the innate beauty and sublime nature of the songs themselves, from the endearing summery swirl of 'Tarumbero', to the lazy porch recline of 'Quizas Un Dia Asi' and intricate instrumental narrative of Andres Prado's 'Chincha'. With the DVD and hugely impressive wooden box casing, this is a must for the world music traveller.