Spotlight April 17, 2013
Pack Monstro And The Neo Funk Fire

Funk Na Caixa is Brazilian label dedicated to what they have termed "neo funk", essentially the latest development to emerge from the ever evolving funk carioca scene. We first heard about them through their work with the killer Dieze Tigrona, a female carioca MC dropping rhymes over some seriously next-level production.

The label's focus on expanding and strengthening the basic carioca sound can be heard clearly on "Pack Monstro," their latest mix, which features neo funk bangers from five DJs. Highlights include MC Thiaguinho and Carlos Nunez's “Essa noite eu vou ficar com você,” which starts with a sample of some heavy samba reggae sounds from Bahia and the psychedelicized hooks and trancy vibe of MC Dede's "Funk Do Povao." Judging from this compilation, the funk being produced by the label definitely has a cleaner, more techno-pop sound than glitchy, lo-fi of the carioca that first hit western dancefloors through compilations like Man Recordings "Favela Booty Beats." But, despite the pop sensibilities and slicked up production, the rapping and singing and (not to mention the beats themselves) keep the sound more street than club.

In a broader sense, efforts like this seem to reflect an increasing awareness by many Brazilian producers of the crossover potential of their electronic music. It's also mirrored in the rapid evolution of techno brega over the past few years- in both cases, a music that was initially shockingly raw and beat oriented has grown up fast, expanding far beyond its basic template to reintroduce elements of songcraft and compositional complexity that were often initially lacking. Although the newer music may lose something of the maniacal joy of its earlier incarnations, this is made up for by increasingly variety and  of the productions. Check it out! 

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