Published Jan 14, 2014Roël Calister launched his career in the Netherlands playing tambú, a genre traditional to his native Curaçao, the Caribbean island near the Venezuelan coast. Originally sticking to an all-acoustic platform, in 2010 Calister and his bandmates in Kuenta i Tambú (which means "Stories and Drums" in the Papiamentu language) decided to fuse the percussive tambú rhythms with modern European electronic dance forms. Putting a contemporary spin on what is a centuries-old tradition, the group chose the portmanteau 'tambutronic' for their freshly-crafted, highly energetic sound.
While most of the tracks on this dance floor-friendly album feel primed for club play only, the traditional tambú sound seeps up from between the beats at times (the vocals in "La Señora" or the thunderous drums of closing track "Bool"). This is probably what makes Tambutronic so popular in the band's native land. As a matter of fact, Kuenta i Tambú have themselves acknowledged the inclusive nature of their oeuvre: To them, tambutronic, the genre and the album, is "where Curaçao's past dances with its future and takes on the world." (Jiga Musica)