Boomkat Product Review:
Killer new album from one of our favourite Latin American producers, spelling out a brooding, swaggering definition of reggaeton modernism in his 2nd ‘Zona’ collection.
An OG member of the NAAFI crew, Chile’s Paul Marmota has been prized ‘round our way since his ‘Adaptacion’ LP for Lit City Trax knocked our socks off in 2017, especially its ‘Xon’ and ’0619’ joints. FFWD to 2020’s ‘Zona II’ and Marmota is fully locked into the prevailing reggaeton sound which has been his modus operandi for years now, as found on his productions for Bad Gyal, Virgen María, La Zowi Puta, Rosella and Yung Beef, a.o.
Possessing a moodier strain of Florentino’s romantic and devilishly detailed production style, Marmota exhibits exacting sound design chops across 13 melodic vocals and instrumentals. There’s a big, club-ready ace in his slow, breezy flip of Tatu, ‘En Lo Oscuro’ starring El Mini, and a totally infectious mix of Rosella’s purring vocal and nagging electro bass arp on ‘Agua Bandita’; plus the cold grind and grimy strings of ‘Zona’, vocalled by Javielto; haunting instrumentals ’Dembow Gotiko’ and ‘Flowsito’ that sound like dark late ‘80s New Beat via late ‘90s ragga and 2020 reggaeton; the gloriously bittersweet ballad of ‘Matas’ feat. Ricci; and another futurist dancehall/reggaeton flex with ‘Vampira’.