Between reflections on migration and recontextualization of his cultural heritage, multi-instrumentalist Vitu Valera announces an exciting concept album on the Peruvian label Matraca
Vitu Valera is a Peruvian multi-instrumentalist musician and producer based in Barcelona. It is affiliated with Matraca, a label founded in Lima in 2013 and whose tenth anniversary we celebrated last summer during a collaborative evening at La Machine with Vitu at the opening. It is therefore logical that his first album will be released on the Peruvian label on November 15.
Entitled Migrx, this release is a contemporary interpretation of Afro-Peruvian music seen through the prism of club and electronic music. The album thus describes “musically” the struggle that being a migrant represents.
A true concept album both in content and form, Vitu Valera’s thoughts on migration and the feeling of his native country from his adopted city articulate the entire project. « In search of a (better) future, we don’t identify with just one community. Comfort terrifies us, and migrating is our natural state as animals », explains the musician in the Migrx press release, before however weighing up his remarks: « In reality, that illusion constantly fades as we painfully long for our family, our wild hope of improving our native country ».
In the midst of this joy, the nostalgia for the town where we left our heart torments us.
Luis Abanto Morales “El Provinciano” (quoted by Vitu Valera)
The adopted Barcelona native translated this feeling by creating an absolutely collaborative and cross-border work, inviting no less than nine artists on the ten tracks that constitute Migrx. Based on Latin America, the United States, Japan and Europe, the particularity of these nine guests is that they are all located in a city outside their country of origin.
Musically, Migrx makes extensive use of the cajón and the quijada (literally, a donkey’s jaw, common in Peruvian and Andean music) as percussion elements. There are also many Afro-Peruvian patterns and the use of Moroccan karkabas.
Before the release, Matraca entrusted us with the broadcast of the track “Papelito”, the result of the collaboration between Vitu Valera and Nicole.Aiff. The title had already stuck with us at the end of Vitu Valera La Machine’s set this summer, and it’s the case again. After more than two minutes of progressive build-up during which the electronics merge impeccably with the Afro-Peruvian percussions, the piece suddenly spins into a hybrid dembow before falling back into an irresistible reggaeton pattern. A true demonstration of the musical and rhythmic expert talents of the two protagonists.