One of the pleasures of the whole music blog phenomenon is the way that new scenes and sounds percolate back and forth as different bloggers catch each other’s grooves and elaborate on them.
A good example of this phenomenon is the way that the growing interest in M.I.A. led to a wide dissemination of her bootleg album Piracy Funds Terrorism (get it if you haven’t), produced by Diplo. On that compilation, Diplo throws in a couple of seriously booty-shakin’ tracks with Portuguese vocals: “Baile Funk” one, two and three. Hearing these tracks, a whole lot of folks asked themselves, “Who’s Baile Funk?”
The right question, it turns out, is “What is baile funk?” Baile funk, it turns out, is a sound that is emerging from the slums of Rio in Brazil (thus its other name, favela funk). Mixing up arcing half-sung lyrics, phat bass lines, spare production and samples — a little Clash here, a little hacked-up classical there — baile funk artists are making a music as pure-party as Jamaican dub in its heyday.