Best Albums of 2016
selected by Alejandro Ortiz

Animazules <BR>“Astronomic” / “Astrologic”

“Astronomic” / “Astrologic”

Producer Jorge Salazar crafted a double-EP voyage, full of warm borders and samples on a interesting Ableton Live experiment. The idea of both albums ended up as trippy soundtrack in a tropical kind of sci-fi script.

Both “Astronomic” and “Astrologic” take references from different artists in a systematic adventure where surprises are found in every margin.

After the music concludes, Animazules ends up feeling like an activist who fights against negligence and delivers million of textures just to comfort ones’ mind and senses.

♪♫ Listen: “Waria” (feat. Sanbuenas) + album stream

Animazules on Bandcamp, Facebook.

Ave Negra <BR>“Jóvenes Iracundos”

Ave Negra
“Jóvenes Iracundos”

With Jóvenes Iracundos, Ave Negra finds itself as a band that tells their audience how rock & roll really works: euphoria, long nights and revelation hymns against the strict paradigms of what rocking actually means.

With a quickly career, Ave Negra proves in every album that punk rock can take infinite forms and stories. Their last album it’s not an exception.

Once again the exploding trio from San José delivered a bunch of fuzzy songs made to get on a fuck off mood and scream like there was no tomorrow.

♪♫ Listen: “Krokodil” + album stream

Ave Negra on Bandcamp, Facebook, Twitter.

Hijos <BR>“Nu9ve”


Pablo Rojas solo outfit, Hijos, emerged last year with a couple of singles with a distinguished dream-pop mood.

Nothing seen before in Costa Rica’s underground scene, Roja’s pop it’s a vital and minimalist exposition of mixes between legendary references (similarities with Gustavo Cerati and Daniel Melero’ s Colores Santos p.e.) and contemporary psychedelia.

I’m sure “Nu9ve” is the new chapter on Costa Rica’s musical scenario. It promises a transparent crafted pop with futuristic ideals that will last a few years more, hopefully.

♪♫ Listen: “Cuatro Manos” + album stream

Hijos on Bandcamp, Facebook.

José Fantasma <BR>“FANTASMAL”

José Fantasma

After a couple of years posting demos and singles, José Fantasma finally released his debut material this 2016 in a exceptional and colorful EP.

With “FANTASMAL”, José surrounds listeners with moody & catchy tunes proclaiming an experimental trip around textures.

The album it’s perceived as a melodic, but lonely diary that asks permission to make those ambient songs the best thing you’ll hear in days.

♪♫ Listen: “SALTANDO UN LAGO” + album stream

José Fantasma on Bandcamp, Facebook.

Los Crveles <BR>“Ritmo Infernal”

Los Crveles
“Ritmo Infernal”

In months, Los Crveles became the most accessible and raw band that Costa Rica had been waiting for. Screams, an apocalyptic scene excerpt and guitars. What else can you expect when looking at that incredible sort of tattoo-inspired cover art?

“Ritmo Infernal” talks – yells – about an uncertain present. In there, people can look for salvation at a hell-setted place, and ironically even found joy with the strident songs created with a mix of black metal and surf rock.

♪♫ Listen: “Desastre” + album stream

Los Crveles on Bandcamp, Facebook.

Los Waldners <BR>“Malas Decisiones”

Los Waldners
“Malas Decisiones”

Once again San José’s darlings, Los Waldners, recorded an album based on moments that recreates the bittersweetness of youth. Despite that feeling, listeners are always ready to dance and cry with the quintet´s dramatic and warm anthems.

“Malas Decisiones” opens up as an album where everyone is invited, also their youth-love relationships, even though they were not successful. The only condition to come in is being ready and comfortable for a twee pop journey which may shake you like never before.

♪♫ Listen: “Y de la mía” + album stream

Los Walnders on Bandcamp, Facebook, Twitter.

Monte <BR>“Panta Rey”

“Panta Rey”

Oh, Monte. What can we not say about this prolific and yet solid project?

With a short comeback (in a one-night only show this December) to stages recently, the powerful trio knows how to articulate – in a musical way – a bunch of nostalgic feelings, glued to an unstoppable generation.

On “Panta Rey” Monte takes Heraclitus’ philosophical concept for “Panta rhei”, recreating a solid storyline about the “everything flows” meaning in a fuzzy atmosphere where guitar and bass strings crashes with a constant beat upon idealistic scenarios of nostalgia, human relationships and hope.

♪♫ Listen: “Los Templos del Día” + album stream

Monte on Bandcamp, Facebook, Twitter.

Rompiste Mis Flores <BR>“Apéndice”

Rompiste Mis Flores

Heredia-based producer Coraima Díaz, aka Coco Nut Chan, aka Rompiste Mis Flores, has released another synth-punch album just a year after her first refreshing debut album, “Teen Pajama Club”.

On “Apéndice”, Rompiste Mis Flores looks in a direction where glitches are crashed on pastel colors and a fuzzy-vibe electro-pop adventure. Truth is, at the end of Apéndice we hate just a four-track album, we want more.

At some point Coraima Díaz has already charmed us with her echoes or with that crispy space full of glitter and slow dances.

♪♫ Listen: “Joy” + album stream

Rompiste Mis Flores on Bandcamp, Facebook.