Two years after the release of their last mixtape, Wig Party, Cuci Amador and Tony Smurphio of Miami indie-dance sensation Afobeta are eager to unleash some new music on the world. But even though they've been recently performing new material at shows, an official EP or full-length release appears unlikely for the time being.
To help put pressure on our favorite electro-pop duo, we here at Crossfade caught up with Cuci and Tony to chat about upcoming projects, the Miami music scene, and the future of Afrobeta.
See also: Miami's 25 Best Electronic Music Acts
Crossfade: The last thing you released was Wig Party in 2012. Do you guys have any new projects in the works?
Tony: We're definitely due for something new. We have a bunch on new songs, we're just trying to figure out how to release them. The strategizing is more Cuci's department.
Cuci: Yeah. I think that it's one of those things where there has to be some kind of a plan. Because, otherwise, you're just putting stuff out and who cares?
Tony: The reality is, honestly, our label is pushing more of an EDM sound. And ehhh, we're trying. But it feels like the stuff we're doing now, the label doesn't really get. They want more of that Avicii sound and we just can't do it, man.
Cuci: The idea is we're spending time figuring out what we really want to put out. We have the music and we play it at our shows, we just haven't been able to put it out there.
Wig Party, unlike your first two releases, was a free mixtape made available online for streaming and downloading. Do you see future projects being released in a similar manner?
Cuci: Yeah, I just think it's more entertaining and it's more exciting for us, because it's really hard to hold on to a piece of music and wait to do the proper release. It's more organic for us to just make a song, play it at our shows, put it out there, and then move on. Next.
Tony: Yeah, the days of the LP are done, I think.
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Cuci: But there is a certain level of restraint that is part of the education of the way you should put things out, and part of me wants to understand that and appreciate it. It's hard to see yourself outside of yourself, if that makes any sense. I had someone at the label tell me that I would always think my newest song was my best song, but my older songs are good too. You have to understand that, and listen to advice, and be like, "OK. I get it."
See also: Downtown Miami's Five Best Dance Clubs
How do you guys feel about the local scene here in Miami?
Tony: I think it's very healthy, especially this electronic thing. Cuci's got her radio show, I Love You, Miami, on Klangbox, and she only plays local music.
Cuci: For two hours, every Monday, from 6 to 8 p.m., and I've been doing it for almost a year now. At first, I was worried I wouldn't be able to find enough local music for the show. But now it's like there's so much music that I can't play it all.
What are some of the best live music venues in Miami?
Tony: The Stage, Grand Central, Bardot. We lost Pax, which was really cool. Blackbird Ordinary is awesome, Vagabond is really nice. And now there's also The Nest, which is right next to Vagabond. The thing is there's two completely different scenes in Miami, there's the LIV scene, and then there's our artistic bohemian scene. We kind of have our foot in both doors.
Miami's crowds and fans are usually on the receiving end of a lot of hate. Is it well-deserved?
Cuci: I don't think so. It's just all about the party here. The Miami audience wants to dance, they want to party, they want to get drunk, they want to have a good time. If you're going to stand up there and sing a ballad about your fucking love ... No, they don't want that shit.
Tony: They're going to talk over it, and they're going to be rude.
Cuci: They're going to be rude as fuck. And it sucks. But if they like you and they're having a good time, then they're the best audience ever. There's nobody that dances better than them, and there's nobody that has as much fun. It's different when you play music that people don't know, you kind of have to enamor them. If you're an established artist and people are buying your music and getting tickets to go see you, then you can do whatever you want. But when you're playing music that people haven't heard, you have to fight for your bread and butter. These people don't know who the fuck you are, you're getting up there and you have to be like, "Love me now! Get into this shit right now. Have a good time right now."
So what's in store for the future of Afrobeta?
Cuci: I know it's a horrible thing to say, but I think that we should leave for a little bit.
Tony: Just for the summer.
Cuci: Because it gets very hot.
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Tony: It gets very hot. Look at all this hair, I'm like an Alaskan husky. We'll probably head to the West Coast for the summer and base ourselves out of there, and just tour all over.
-- Pablo Chacon Alvarez
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