TXT: yoss PHOTO: courtesy of N.E.
NE. National Electronic. High-tech music….in Cuba?
Their inspiration: sophisticated and snob. Radiohead or Mr. Dizo, and some ‘weird’ Cubans, like Juan Blanco and Edesio Alejandro with their ‘80s Banda de Máquinas (MAKINA).
They are not house music DJ’s rabble-rousing teenagers. They don’t sample, and they are not musicians either; except for the arrhythmic ramblings on the harmonica with which the youngest of them perturbs the other ‘camel’ passengers, they don’t play instruments, nor do they know about solfege or reading scores.
Their inspiration is not in the classic nostalgia for the pre-‘59 ‘American’ years. Their interest is in the Cuban history that begins and ends in the idyllic ‘80s with strong Soviet presence.
The fact that the music is electronic is unimportant, what’s important is that it is made in land of salsa, and without concessions: “The strength and wealth of our musical heritage could become a burden, difficult to overcome; we are trying to make a Cuban-style fusion, but not timba, which is easier and more commercial, a path which, unfortunately, many good musicians have opted for.”
Alexis de la O Joya (1977), 100% Havanan, plastic artist, studied Stage Design and has done illustrations for books and articles, as well as cartoons. Edwin Casanova (1980), from Sancti Spiritus, also studied Stage Design, and was a finalist in an important Latin American architectural contest. They got together in 2003 to compose the sound for a plastics exhibition. The following year their collaboration became permanent, and they haven’t stopped since then.
+ information pág. 132-137 The H Book 2008 09