Nortec Collective: Tijuana Sound Machine (Nacional/Southbound)

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Nortec Collective: Rosarito
Nortec Collective: Tijuana Sound Machine (Nacional/Southbound)

Often things just turn up unexpectedly at Elsewhere and this album from Tijuana's electronica outfit Nortec (a neoligism from Norteno and Techno), was certainly unexpected. It came out almost two years ago.

The NC keep things very simple -- beats, samples, melodies -- and that is part of the charm: think back to the roots of hip-hop or electronica and remember how elemental things were.

These guys -- Ramon Amezcua and Pepe Mogt who style themselves Bostich and Fussible -- aren't above using vocoders and the most simple of electronic gear, and you could imagine much of this being the soundtrack to Frogger or Pacman if they had originated south of the Border.

This is not to diminish this (I have no doubt they could be more musically sophisticated should they so choose, as on the earlier Tijuana Sessions Vol 3) but it does feel a little undercooked throughout, especially in the comparison with Mexican Institute of Sound. Or the lively Bar Mexico double-disc that came out 18 months ago.

Interesting, just not interesting enough over the long haul. 

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Peter Huitson - Mar 17, 2010

We saw these guys at Womad last weekend. We watched them set up - a huge control panel which looked like something out of Star Trek, with 3 large projection screens behind it. The band came on, dressed in black with black stetsons and leather boots - a spanish guitar, a trumpet and a piano accordion then Bostich and Fussible, controlling the techno dance beats. The music started and the crowd were on their feet. The only other time I've heard bass so low and rumbling was when Fat Freddy's Drop played Womad - you could feel your organs being reorganised inside your body. The soloists had real attitude, punching skywards with their fists from time to time and pointing at the one playing the current solo spot. Throughout the concert, pictures, movies and graphics flashed on the screens - sometimes in unison - sometimes all different and the music just rocked on with the crowd heaving. There is a video clip of them playing to a Mexican audience, on their website - they equalled that performance and more.

Night Nurse - Mar 18, 2010

saw these guys perform on Fri and Sat, most excitng thing I have seen in a while, definatley a live band, the crowd, were infectious,

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