More from our special web-only Labels We Love features, today we check out Matias Aguayo's fledgling new Cómeme label.
Matias Aguayo is often cited as one of the pioneers of minimal house, but don't tell him that—he can't stand talking about genres. Instead, the Chilean native is focused on his BumBumBox street parties and his new label, Cómeme, which has already released some truly eclectic dance tracks from a number of international artists. With an aesthetic more attuned to community, cumbia, and street sounds than what's big in Ibiza, Aguayo continues to blaze new trails in the dance music world, as can be heard on his recent Resident Advisor podcast. XLR8R caught up with Aguayo only a few days after he finished up his newest full-length for Kompakt, Ay! Ay! Ay!, which will be released in October.
XLR8R: It seems like the BumBumBox parties and Cómeme came about because of a lack of certain sounds being represented in current club culture. Do you think there's enough sonic diversity in current techno?
Matias Aguayo: I think we don't even know if there is such a lack; the thing was more that we found music from the past and newer music coming to us from very unexpected places and contexts, and this motivated us to do music in a vibe more according to what worked during our street parties. We are not reacting to some musical discourse; it is more that we are motivated and inspired by other things than a certain club sound.
Matías Aguayo feat. Aza Zander "I Was in Love"
The parties and the label feature artists from all over Europe and South America. Any plans to expand into North America soon?
We already have Rebolledo, from Xalapa, Mexico. There are no artists from further north than that now, but who knows? All the Cómeme material is a result of the collaborative work of people who've lived a lot of musical moments together. As none of us have spent much time north of Mexico, there have been no musical collaborations yet, but obviously, it would be great.
As one of the original progenitors of what was called "minimal," how do you feel about what is being called 'minimal' nowadays?
It's more and more irritating to talk about genres today. Some people are talking about "house" nowadays, but when I hear what they mean it has nothing to do with what I perceive as house music. In the end it becomes very technical talk about "musical elements" that make a track sound like some "genre," and that makes the musical selections of a DJ become too superficial. So 'minimal' once was a strategy, a way of working, a way of focusing, and more than anything, an idea of leaving things untold and allowing the mind and the body do the rest. If 'minimal' now is an overload of technical trickery linked to a dull laptop shuffle rhythm for hours around the same bpm, then I must admit I get tired and start to long for a good sleep.
Matias Aguayo "Bo Jack"
How would you describe Ay! Ay! Ay! in comparison to Are You Really Lost? or the Closer Musik collaboration?
Ay! Ay! Ay! for me was like a step further towards the reasons behind why I make music, and that lead me to a more free aproach, trying to focus on recording spontaneity and the moment of really enjoying music-making. Composing in an electronic way leads us to start with what we can call 'production' in a much too early stage of the creative process— we start thinking about the sound of the hi-hat when we have not developed the main idea yet. So my decision of making arrangements much more based on jamming with the microphone helped me to have fewer obstacles between my ideas and the results. The album has more voice, more rhythm and less control, and it has been inspired by a lot of music I've heard between Are You Really Lost? and now. It has been a time very linked to my musical life with friends in Buenos Aires and Santiago, Chile, where I recorded most of it, though I finished it in collaboration with Vicente Sanfuentes in Paris, and the final mix was done with Marcus Rossknecht in Berlin.
What are some upcoming releases from Cómeme?
Rebolledo's 12" Guerrero is about to be released, with four great tracks of his very genuine caveman disco sound. We will soon have tracks coming from Capracara, Cristian S., Diego and the Don (a collaboration between Diego Morales and me), and DJs Pareja. Some more on the fifth Cómeme release, but I can't tell you yet who!
DJ Pareja "Kenia"
pictured Matias Aguayo