When the story is told in retrospect, the revolutionary energy that will transform modern dance literally came from one man. Munchi. Born Ravij Munch, the current resident of Rotterdam, The Netherlands is in the midst of an incredible evolutionary period in the development of his progressive and bass heavy sound. If you want to hear the single-most important creative force in the seemingly monolithic pop beast begrudgingly known as “EDM,” it is strongly suggested that tonight’s third anniversary week Moombahton Massive event at U Street Music Hall requires your attendance.
Dave Nada invented moombahton, but Munchi improved it. Flosstradamus kicked off the surge of trap into dance, but Munchi improved that, too. In January of 2012, I described the aforementioned producer’s sound as if Angela Davis’s afro and Fela Kuti [had] a child who [lived] next door to Waka Flocka Flame and the Fania All-Stars. The mix of native and urban cultures then spiked with the 22nd century wildness of digital style is where Munchi excels. It’s not enough to remix Datsik’s dubstep hit “Firepower” into arguably the first “moombahcore” anthem. Instead, it’s how he did it, blending elements of classic reggaeton and a dembow riddim that kicks like a mule with third-generation dubstep into a style all its own, a free-wheeling and caterwauling thrill ride of a track. Amazingly, they’re all like that. “Firepower,” the trap remixes of DJ Chuckie’s “Moombah” and Cam’ron’s “Dipset Anthem,” the ambient moombahsoul of “Hope,” and the OG anthem “Sandungeo” all are taut tracks created in the purposeful clashing of extraordinarily vitriolic energies.
Judging from the none-too-scientific “times his mop-haired Afro bounds up and down upon his head in the booth” meter, it’s arguable that U Hall is Munchi’s favorite venue in which to spin. A little known fact: Mama Nada’s Empanadas started as a regular Moombahton Massive delicacy because Dave’s mother decided to share her personal family recipe with the world in order to raise money for Munchi after he suffered a brain aneurysm and required extensive medical care. Between the love that the city has shown him, as well as a system uniquely equipped to handle absurd levels of rampaging low end sounds, Munchi’s sound and style fits like a hand in glove. He’s spun at U Hall on three other occasions, those sets more like rock concerts turning into wild displays of sensual energy. Given that his level of global renown has grown immensely since his last set, this should be nothing short of incredible.
Not to be sneezed at either are Nadastrom and DJ Sabo. Sabo’s own Sol*Selectas label just released the 28 Days EP from UK deep moombahton favorite Disgraceland, as well as recent compilation Moombah Fiesta 2, two EPs absolutely worth owning. Blended with his own organic and funky edits, his just-past-peak hour set should, as always, be a winner. Nadastrom’s hard at work on finishing their debut album project, and with any hope, Dave Nada and Matt Nordstrom will give a few unreleased jams a go on the system. Their latest dub reggae-flavored moombahton jam, “DTLA,” has wondrous depth and an incredibly fresh vibe. Now available on a new Mixpak Records compilation, it is their first solo single of 2013.