Though Pacha Massive was born in the Boogie-down Bronx, theirs is a global identity. They build their blend on traditional sounds from each member's roots, like palo (from band member Nova's native Dominican Republic) and cumbia (from the homeland, Colobmia, of the duo's other half). The pair then blends those with other world beats -- dub chief among them - -and frame that within modern electronica. The result is at once danceable but downbeat, laid-back and smooth, leaving absolutely no question as to the cause for the cult following they've been procuring since their 207 debut, All Good Things.
Pacha Massive will bring that bilingual, multicultural, electronic goodness to Miami this weekend, where the act will have the honors of kicking off what promises to be a three-week foray into culture for that ass (see how easy we classed that up?). ¡Mira Que Lindas! is a unique art exhibit that will take over the Awarehouse from this Saturday, May 29 through Saturday, June 19, and will feature Latin pop album art, as well as some very cool performances. Stay tuned for more on those in the coming weeks, but meanwhile, read on.
We got a chance to catch up with Nova and Maya over the phone recently (from some nasty bumper-to-bumper traffic on the 95, as a matter of fact). Here's what they had to say about their sound, their evolution, and their gig in the MIA tomorrow night.
New Times: You guys have several different styles going on within your sound, from cumbia to palo and dub to electro. How would you describe it to someone who hasn't heard it?
Maya: I always say it's just a world fusion electronic...thing [laughs].
Nova: Yeah, basically that's it. We kind of mix Latin roots music, and other kinds of world music, with a bunch of different styles of electronic, and we give that our own flavor.
Where did you get the idea? Did it come about naturally, as part of the process of experimentation, or did you guys know starting out that you wanted to blend these world sounds?
Maya: I think it came about naturally. We never really had the intention of making any specific type of music, and I think we still kind of don't. We're very open to exploring. And the cool thing about that is we can stay open to whatever inspiration we have at the moment, we can do anything and not feel locked into one thing.
How do you guys think you've evolved artistically between your breakout release with All Good Things and your latest record, If You Want It?
Nova: I think we're essentially the same people, but perhaps more focused on the project and what we want to do. We're still keeping that openness, though.
You've played some major festivals. Can you pick out your most memorable to date?
Nova: I think they're each memorable for their own reasons. But we played one away from the States, in Turkey, and that was a pretty cool experience. But every festival and every show has something memorable about it.
Maya: I think that one of our most memorable was definitely our first show at Madison Square Garden.
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Tell us a little bit about what those live performances entail, and what fans can expect to see when you guys come to Miami.
Maya: Well, we're definitely a lot of fun [laughs]. We have a great live show. We're presently collaborating with three other live musicians, so we have drums, a great vocalist and one of the guys we've been working with for awhile, who plays different horns, sax, trombone, flute. And we've been playing together for a while now, so we're pretty tight. And we get the crowd pumping, but there's still that little chill vibe. So I think it's going to mix really well with the Miami vibe!
You can catch Pacha Massive live at the Awarehouse with Miami's own Elastic Bond tomorrow night, Saturday, May 29, as part of ¡Mira Que Lindas!. There's no cover, but a $10 donation is suggested. The Awarehouse, 550 NW 29th St., Miami. acustronic.com