BAIUCA’S SONIC WITCHCRAFT IS CRYSTALIZED ON HIS NEW ALBUM EMBRUXO
THE GALICIAN ARTIST PRESENTS EMBRUXO: AN EXERCISE IN PAGAN FOLKTRONICS, ANCESTRAL RECORDING & SOUND MAGIC
If witchcraft is “the set of beliefs and activities attributed to certain people called ‘witches’ who are supposedly endowed with certain magical abilities,” then yes, Baiuca is a witch. And his music is the magic. The Galician producer has become one of the most important alchemists when it comes to recovering traditional music & codes and bringing them not only to a contemporary setting, but to a future one as well.
Three years after the release of Solpor, the album that made him world-renowned in Folktronics and one of the most important alchemists when it comes to mixing Traditional music (in this case, from his native Galicia) with Electronic. With its Avant-garde and Pop melodies and structures; Baiuca presents Embruxo, a sophomore album set to make him an even greater Global figure in the Electronic universe. Embruxo features collaborations with Rodrigo Cuevas, the Tambourine-cantareiras group Lilaina, the flautist-bagpiper Cristian Silva, and Percussionist Xosé Lois Romero.
After presenting previous singles “Luar,” “Veleno,” and “Meigallo” that were delineating the sound and conceptual universe of his new recording techniques, and showcasing unpredictable but cohesive songs in all the singles that he has presented. Embruxo is destined to be one of the albums of the year, as well as a project that redefines the scope of traditional music, club electronics, and the codes of ancient Galician culture.
The album is inspired by the cantigas and the Galician myths of past centuries. The myths of the meigas, the witchcraft, and the Santa Compaña are present in the spirit of the album that presents Baiuca as an alchemist and a mediator between genders and generations, transcending each and every one of them.
Baiuca expresses about his new album:
“Embruxo is a step forward in my way of approaching the composition of an album. Not only does the music maintain sound coherence, but I was clear that there should be a theme and a defined concept of what I wanted to tell.
Mysticism has a very important weight within Galician culture; from the relationship of the living and the dead, as well as from the stories that persisted for centuries around places and magical beings. It is focused mainly on the pagan, in some cases, comes to our days through a direct relationship of the Christian influence that has disturbed (for his interest) certain figures; or at other times even appropriated them.
Through this concept of ‘spiritual culture’ the references that have served as inspiration have ranged from the poetry of the 19th and early 20th centuries such as that of Luis Amado Carballo, Curros Enríquez, or Rosalía de Castro to traditional songbooks such as the ‘Cancioneiro Popular Galego’ by Dorothé Schubarth and Antón Santamaría, and the digital archive of the Museo do Pobo Galego. This has been the basis for collecting verses and songs in which mystical beings or elements of nature are the protagonists: the laundresses, the meigas, the diaño, the moon, the horse, the herbs of San Xoán … images, many of them represented in the video clips of Adrián Canoura, creator of the entire visual element of Embruxo and who has also been part of the inspiration I have had to create the album with his film ‘Caerán lóstregos do ceo.’
In the artwork, Canoura explores one of the most archaic elements conserved in Galicia and in part of the Iberian Peninsula. The petroglyphs, images engraved in stone more than 7,000 years ago, highlight that mystical relationship of the past with evolution of all spiritual culture to this day.
This entire concept perfectly matched the initial idea of making an album in which traditional percussion instruments, mainly made of leather, such as pandeiros and drums, as well as female voices, were the main elements of the album in a way to continue exploring traditional rhythms, but also to use these instruments in new rhythmic structures. A universe in which Xosé Lois Romero has had a very important weight due to all the knowledge and handling that he has of Galician percussion.”
Embruxo is out May 7, 2021 on Raso Estudio.