Best of Music


This summer, Artbound celebrated its one-year anniversary and finished its second season of programming. Season 2 took our exploration of Southern California's cultural landscape to new heights: from the banks of the Tijuana river, to the depths of the Guadalupe-Nipomo Dunes, the vast lands of the Antelope Valley's high desert, and beyond. We witnessed art in museums and on city sidewalks, in tiny studios and under the spotlights of a stage. Since January, we've published 225 new articles, produced 14 short documentaries, and broadcast three hour-long television episodes.

Today, we look back at five of this season's most memorable articles about music. The sounds of Southern California are refreshingly diverse: desert-born hip hop beats, experimental synth-pop cumbias, soulful gospel singers, Central Coast symphonies, and more. Turn up your speakers and enjoy!

Las Cafeteras: Crossing Genres to Become Agents of Change

Las Cafeteras | Photo: Piero F. Giunti.

The group Las Cafeteras was born from the Mexican folk music tradition of Son Jarocho. They explore the power of music to build and tell stories from their community.

Chicano Batman: Not Another Band from East L.A.

Chicano Batman | Photo: Lorena Endara.

As the cultural map of music making continues shifting in East L.A., Chicano Batman has become the sound of local Latino music in the 21st century.

Private Stock: Custom Records Trace an Alternate Music History

Custom Fidelity records | Courtesy of Sinecure Books.

Custom Fidelity was one of the premier "private press" companies in Los Angeles where anyone could produce a record.

Hearing with the Whole Body: Alan Nakagawa's Reverberating Composition

Nakagawa at work, playing with knobs on one hand and tinkering with objects inside the isocube on the other. | Photo: Carren Jao.

Alan Nakagawa creates experiences that tease out the sound lying dormant in normally "quiet" objects and deliver sound that gets under our skin.

Locals Only: Meet the Bands of the Coachella Valley

Las Feas | Photo by Kenneth Geiger.

Five local bands from the Coachella Valley chat about their takes on the local music scenery, the desert as influence, and the Coachella Music Festival.

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Top Image: Chicano Batman | Photo: Lorena Endara.

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