Best Albums of 2018
selected by Max “Drlacxos” Cueto

Acentoh <BR> “828”


A musical roller coaster is the journey that brings us the exponent of hip hop: Acentoh on his new album “828”. This debut album proves, even more, the ability of Acentoh to make us enter his head by always playing with poetry and mystic. Composed of 8 songs totaling 28 minutes, referring to their birth date, we feel like an ‘accelerate’ that then calms down to rise again, all controlled by the music producer MedioPicky. Hip Hop, psychedelia, root music, all in one production.

♪♫ Listen: “Yogo Yogo” + album stream

Acentoh on Soundcloud, Facebook, Instagram.

Bonnet <BR> “Tierra Puente Cielo”

“Tierra Puente Cielo”

Emmanuel Bonnet is a young local musician and composer, virtuoso with the strings, who has taken his knowledge to other levels, he has taken a turn to the classical guitar taking it to the modern with ease, “Tierra Puente Cielo” is a conceptual album as he explains it the artist: “Tierra” is the reality of one, “Puente” are the decisions one takes to get away from their reality, and “Cielo” is the small euphoria we feel when we take our first step forward. The voice of Bonnet is a surprise, his handling with his guitar create a harmonious, sweet combination, creating a trip full of surprises.

♪♫ Listen: “Dunas” + album stream

Bonnet on Soundcloud, Facebook, Instagram.

Boundary <BR> “Mi Transferencia No. 2 ”

“Mi Transferencia No. 2 ”

2018 was the year in which our prodigy of local electronics, Josué Suero Javier “Boundary” will release 3 EPs, although with different lines, together they form what we have called the Boundary trilogy. Three works that together do not exceed 15 tracks, where we see an evolution but not a separation of its line. It is difficult to choose only one, but “Mi Transferencia No.2” is the best sample, an EP that with only 23 minutes of duration in four songs, details the versatility of the young producer, linking us to different subgenres within electronics, showing it as a box of surprises.

♪♫ Listen: “De mi Ser” + album stream

Boundary on Soundcloud, Bandcamp, Facebook, Instagram.

Diego Raposo <BR>“Caribe Express”

Diego Raposo
“Caribe Express”

2018 was a very active year for Diego Raposo, whether you think about working on the beats for the next album of NZA 333, mastering for Ce Qei, and the production of “Caribe” of his project La Ñapa – to finish up this busy year with his first full-length album. “Caribe Express” seems like the summary of everything he has offered yet. On this outstanding record, Diego shows the Caribbean of the future, and you can find the proof in “Desconocidos” (with MULA), a kind of Bachata of the future. Or reggaeton in another track with Angelo Reeve called “La Oficial”. But let’s not forget “Bate” with Mediopicky, or “Tamales” which is a mix of trap, electronic, experimentation – in a whole range of rhythms.

Diego Raposo keeps creating colourful sound pictures, regardless of genres or tempos.

♪♫ Listen: “Desconocidos” + album stream

Diego Raposo on Soundcloud, Bandcamp, Facebook, Instagram.

Isaac Hernández <BR> “Raíz”

Isaac Hernández

“Raíz” is an improvised jazz album but it has a lot of composition. As Isaac himself says, “it is a jazz format in the Dominican context”. In this record, Hernández looks for less school and more experience, taking Tavito Vásquez as a mentor through a process corresponding with afrodominicanidad. “Raíz” (Root) includes Dominican percussion as its north, and experimentation is noted when, for example, the disk replaces the drum cymbal with a güira. It is clear that this generates an unmistakable sound, supported during the two recording sessions with a team of musicians such as Otoniel Nicolás (drums), Joseán Jacobo (piano), Esar Simó (double bass), and special collaborators Mois Silfa (percussion) and Mediumship Music (Moog). Everything that has forged Hernández as a musician, from watching a movie or breathing the air while walking our boardwalk, is embodied in this material. “You expose yourself when you record,” he told us. It is evident, in “Raíz” the musical evolution of Hernández is obvious. And the evidence is that he has more things to tell from his musical spectrum.

♪♫ Listen: “Llegó La Capitana” + album stream

Isaac Hernández on Soundcloud, Facebook, Instagram, www.

Jonatan Piña Duluc <BR> “Substancia”

Jonatan Piña Duluc

The experimental is still a magic within Jonatan’s jazz, apart from the use of musical objects within the sounds we hear a can, or a bottle for example, that saxophone hooks, and it seems that everything was an improvisation; the games of speed, of tones, of notes, like the interesting idea of making 4 parts of “Substancia”, and a game between “La Hoja Vertical” / “La Hoja Horizontal”, and a pause in “Charm”, as if we were in a night in the Caribbean, and without forgetting the end, “Sappy Times With the Regal Caribbean Mannequins” where you hear from a dog barking, the sound of the street, and what could be seen as an extra song ends up being the ideal chapter to close this new work.

♪♫ Listen: “La Hoja Vertical” + album stream

Jonatan Piña Duluc on Soundcloud, Bandcamp, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, www.

La Armada <BR> “Anti-colonial Vol. 1”

La Armada
“Anti-colonial Vol. 1”

La Armada is a band of Dominican “Hardcore punk” formed in 2011 (and settled in Chicago), who have reached a level of worship on the island. Not only for the international fame, but also because of their sound quality, style, and that La Armada makes anyone shake their heads. If you do not like the genre, we challenge you to listen to “Anti-Colonial vol. 1” where the band continues its rebellious style, cutting like the machete that’s become their symbol. Social, political, bilingual, they show that the experience is not improvised. In this album they prove that you can do punk, hardcore or metal along with the native rhythms of the island without losing the essence, as is the case of “Planned Obsolescence”, intro song and “Unquenchable”. On this trip of 11 songs, 25 minutes fly by, and there is so much adrenaline that you will undoubtedly end up sweating or thinking about the La Armada speech.

♪♫ Listen: “Unquenchable” + album stream

La Armada on Soundcloud, Bandcamp, Facebook, Instagram.

Lenino <BR> “Illusions of Duality…”

“Illusions of Duality…”

With a complete title that goes: “Illusions of Duality: a storyteller’s journey through conflict and empathy”, this sound work of the writer, actor, inventor, musician, artist, Lenino gives us a nod to other genres, a kind of pop-baroque where the piano and his voice are the protagonists.

It is kind of the well-known anti-folk that mostly involves the experience of the singer-songwriter in the theater. Lenino creates stories, and not only puts music to him, but draws with sounds and words each one of the acts, and this is how each song shows us characters, situations, environments. Which should intrigue you to keep listening more and more.

♪♫ Listen: “Tedious Ramblings” + album stream

Lenino on Soundcloud, Bandcamp, Facebook, Instagram.

The Cat Lady <BR> “If You Say So”

The Cat Lady
“If You Say So”

“If You Say So” is the first album of this trio of Dominican rock n ‘roll, This trio adopts very North American influences and infuses them with an undeniable Dominican essence, not so much in the rhythms or in the realization, but translated into the typical carefree attitude of the inhabitants of the Caribbean. His debut album “If You Say So” contains a mix of genres with a firm base in rock that represent the variety of tastes of its members, taking care not to fall into the sin of overwhelming the listener with a jumble of sound influences.

♪♫ Listen: “Leave it All” + album stream

The Cat Lady on Soundcloud, Facebook, Instagram.

Xiomara Fortuna <BR> “Rosa y Azul”

Xiomara Fortuna
“Rosa y Azul”

Xiomara Fortuna is a living legend in the music scene in the Dominican Republic. Without a doubt she had a year of hard work, four productions to her credit, marked her versatility in different genres, but it is “Rosa y Azul” (Pink and Blue) the album that most caught our attention, a work of luxury for this 2018, since the queen of the fusion does it again, mixing rhythms like cumbia, salsa, gospel, soul, bachata and of course our native rhythms, with powerful messages to empower not only the woman, but to the human being through her music.

♪♫ Listen: “Levantante Negra” + album stream

Xiomara Fortuna on Soundcloud, Facebook, Instagram.