biography

Cumbia Cosmonauts is an electronic dancefloor act based in Melbourne, Australia, and recognized internationally as pioneers of Cumbia Digital and Tropical Bass music.  Cumbia Cosmonauts have performed at most leading Australian festivals and clubs, and have toured Europe, Mexico, USA, United Arab Emirates and New Zealand.  The live show features Mexican style MCing, digital percussion and improvised solos performed solo by Moses Iten (a.k.a. Saca La Mois DJ!!), or as a band featuring guest musicians.  The music is produced by Moses Iten in collaboration with Thomas 'Soup' Campbell, and is a combination of infectious Afro-Caribbean rhythms with warm dub bass lines, sweeping synthesizers and driving beats.  Their songs have featured on numerous compilations including Cumbia Libertad (2016), The Rough Guide to Psychedelic Cumbia (2015), Cumbia Bestial! (2012) and on the soundtrack of Grammy-Award winning Argentine TV drama El Puntero (2011). 

Moses Iten lived for some time in Mexico, and returning to Melbourne in 2008 started the Cumbia Cosmonauts inspired by the culture of the Mexican Sonidero sound systems DJs, as well as a contemporary generation of producers pioneering what has become known as Cumbia Digital.  With their debut release 500% Cumbia Mixtape in 2009, the Cumbia Cosmonauts received instant global attention and were booked to perform Australia’s biggest summer festivals, complete a 16-date tour of Europe as a 4-piece band, and be signed to a label in Berlin.  Chusma Records released their Tribal Amazonico EP (2012), and their debut full-length album was pressed as a 180-gram vinyl LP Tropical Bass Station (2013), a genre-defining release on which the production reached way beyond the Cumbia Digital movement with influences from the club sounds of Brazilian Baile Funk, Angolan Kuduro and Mexican Tribal.  Tropical Bass Station was launched on a second Europe tour in 2013, and numerous shows around Australia including Adelaide Festival, St Kilda Festival, Rainbow Serpent and Next Wave Festival.

Mexico City-based blog and label Cassetteblog invited Cumbia Cosmonauts on an extensive 17-date tour of Mexico in 2014/2015, and released their long-awaited EPs Cumbia Sampuesana (2014) and Mexico Remixes (2016).  Currently recording their second album Radio Africa, the Cumbia Cosmonauts sound is once again taken into new directions exploring the universe of West African musical traditions in collaboration with 'Griot' artists Lamine Sonko and Amadou Kalissa, and Nigerian trumpet sensation Olugbade Okunade (Egypt 80).  Whilst Radio Africa is to be launched in Australia in late 2016, Cumbia Cosmonauts will once again tour Europe in August-September to preview the release, and for the first time also the Middle East. 

 

LIVE PERFORMANCE LINE-UP

SOLO: Moses Iten a.k.a. Saca La Mois DJ!! performs live club set featuring exclusive Cumbia Cosmonauts remixes and songs.  Featuring distinct MCing (Mexican Sonidero-style "toasting") and percussion (guacharaca, bells, Roland SPD-SX drumpads).

BAND: Full band line-up features Moses and Thomas "Soup" Campbell (synths, beats, joystick, turntables) as a duo, trio or with four performers.  Frequent live guest performers include Thomas Mitchell (percussion), Lamine Sonko (percussion/vocals), Amadou Kalissa (kora/percussion), Olugbade Okunade (trumpet/vocals), VJ Martin Hadley (visuals - digital projection), Carlos Parraga (accordion/keyboards/percussion), and Hernan Cortes Nava (accordion/percussion).