MOOMBAH-WEEK: Is Munchi the world’s most inventive new producer?
by Marcus K. Dowling
This is a tale of reckless American punk club music with international influences. Less than 1000 days old, moombahton’s rise is a stunning tale of Dave Nada’s invention blending with technology, a perfect example of evolution and diversity, a now global sound that’s everything and nothing at the same time. “Past present future music,” it invokes cumbia, dancehall, house, disco, hip hop, dubstep, soul, rock, punk, and so much more. With the nascent genre’s only hard and fast rule being that the pace cannot leave over 108-112 BPM, it’s the height of controlled anarchy, an underground movement turning hip partiers into a sensual minded two-stepping army. It’s peace, love, unity and respect remixed, a brand new thing for a brand new dance music generation.
This is what happens when a wild Dominican-Dutchman shakes up the Internet with all his might. Rajiv Munch is a 22-year old Rotterdam native who with every production he concocts continuously flips the future on its ear. Moombahton is only the beginning. “I missed the last train I needed to catch to play a show, so I went home and while searching on the internet found Dave Nada’s track ‘Moombahton.’ I was shocked! I had been looking for a sound like this for years. I was a fan of bubbling (a frenetic reggaeton offshoot musical style) and reggaeton, and this was exactly what I needed as a producer.” Having toiled in near complete obscurity in mainstream circles, Munchi’s initial output shocked and amazed all. However, it is in his growth and development in his prodigious talent where he has carved his niche as a future legend.
“Munchi’s going to be one of those producers in the future that you talk about. He’s really special,” says Munchi’s collaborator and Charlotte, NC native David Heartbreak. The duo released a killing spree of mixtapes in 2010, each more powerful than the last, setting the duo apart from any similar sounds. Work with Mad Decent, T & A and a few official remixes cemented his rising star, but he continues to passionately search for new inspirations. Munchi’s the type of producer who can name drop (or remix) dubstepper Datsik, bass pioneer Burial and underrated 2000s R & B hitmaker Tweet in the same sentence. He’s also the same guy who in the midst of releasing a slew of game changing moombahton tracks can slip out some Waka Flocka inspired “trap bubbling,” the kind of insane, sudden innovation required by only the highest class of genius.
Munchi is motivated by historical preservation and a surgical precision in carving his future through the future of music. The Dutch master’s climb is a heartwarming tale of a honest auteur driven by honest goals in a musical universe that so many deem criminally dishonest. Famously, when the DJ suffered brain trauma during a brief Hawaiian mini tour, the entire underground DJ community chipped in to pay for surgery, medication and flight home for the non-American insured producer. When the DJ plays live, whether at a Moombahton Massive at DC’s U Street Music Hall, Barcelona’s Sonar Festival, LA’s Mad Decent Block Party or a crazy night in the Ukraine, two things are guaranteed. One, his mop-haired Afro will jump and sway in time to his phenomenal creations, and two, you’re bearing witness to the creator of music that will make you question what you thought the future could sound like. Only in the face of such stupefying levels of humility can one find a man willing to provide answers to such impressively futuristic notions.