Doctor Nativo is one of Central America’s most exciting new talents. His music explores themes of Mayan spirituality, social justice and folk wisdom, punctuated by an explosive sound combining reggae, cumbia, hip hop, and Mayan traditional music. This electrifying group will move audiences and take them on a visceral journey to the land of the Maya with an infectious sound reminiscent of Manu Chao and Los Gaiteros de San Jacinto, it will appeal to fans of cumbia, world music, reggae, those interested in indigenous culture, and the dancers!
Doctor Nativo first made his name in Guatemalan hip hop scene, working with the highly acclaimed group Bacteria Soundsystem Crew. After years of combining reggae and hip hop, he had an epiphany when he began to explore his indigenous roots under the guidance of the elder Tata Pedro. In pursuing this path, he was moved to form the first Mayan rap group, Balam Ajpu, who are known throughout Mayan communities for rapping in T’zutuhil, celebrating the traditional cosmology, and sharing the culture with a wider audience. Guatemaya is something of a folk hit in Guatemala, contributing to a renewed sense of identity among youth in the country, while inspiring audiences around the world to sing along with the catchy hooks. The song combines dub production methods, traditional Mayan and Garifuna instruments, with guitars and percussion.
The EP comes with two remixes from Oonga. First, the track gets the club treatment, optimized for tropical dancefloors and big bass-heavy systems. Second, a downtempo dub techno remix for the all-night dancers, full of hypnotic build and release.
No one remembers the date of its inception, but Mad Meg have existed, in some form, for centuries. The earliest known depiction of Mad Meg is a 1568 rendering by Breughel the Elder, called Dulle Grete: armed with frying pans, kitchen knives, and other peasant implements, a motley gang of ruffians stages a hodge-podge assault on Hell itself.
The leader of Mad Meg, Russian-born poet, photographer, lunatic Ilya Popenko, is a towering and unpalatable figure, whose morbidly fascinating performance style and zombie-like singing does nothing to elucidate the profundity, charming self-deprecating irony, and expressive subtlety of his songs, written sometimes in English, sometimes in Russian. These qualities are further obscured by the clamoring instrumental accompaniment of his assembly of sidekicks, who play in an eclectic style they themselves haphazardly identify as “Punk-Chanson-Noir”.
Assembled and based in New York, the eclectic and hard-rocking band, with overtones of Eastern European existential anguish, have toured extensively in Russia and the former Soviet Bloc, including tours that covered close to 30 cities throughout the vast, frozen expanse of Russia, and in the course of which they shared the stage with such luminaries as Nogu Svelo, and Emir Kusturica.