Words by Andy Battaglia
Nídia, Nídia é Má, Nídia é Fudida (Principe)
This one comes from the antic and animated stable of DJs and producers behind Principe, a fantastic label devoted to dance-music sounds from the club scene in Lisbon, Portugal. Nídia produced one of the better tracks on the latest album by Fever Ray, and her own full-length offering abounds in sounds that go deep and spacey, with a propulsion that rumbles and shakes.
Words by Gary Suarez
The emergence of Lisbon’s Afro-Portuguese kuduro sound denotes the vast potential of electronic music to adapt and thrive outside of the more conventional urban centers for dance such as Berlin or London. While the Principe Discos imprint didn’t have its most prolific year, it held its own in 2017 in representing the scene. A name no doubt recognized by those familiar with the groundbreaking Cargaa series, DJ Lycox at last presents a full-length, one unencumbered by expectations. Via the deep house grooves of “Domingo Abençoado” and the trancey leads of “Sky,” he gives the vibrant subgenre a rejuvenating jolt throughout Sonhos & Pesadelos. The anticipated polyrhythmic complexities of this music persist even as the implementations fluctuate in often wild ways. The balearic finale “Solteiro” peaks with a pristine balance of elements, making for a style somewhere just beyond the reach of tropical house.
Words by Philip Sherburne
Not only did the 20-year-old producer Nídia have a hand in “IDK About You,” one of the most electrifying songs on Fever Ray’s Plunge; the Portuguese-born, Bordeaux-based electronic musician helped push the Afro-Lusophone sound of batida forward with a debut album brimming with syncopated rhythms and unusually tactile percussive tones. Nídia É Má, Nídia É Fudida—a title that loosely translates as Nídia Is a Fucking Badass—confirms that she’s not riding anybody’s coattails.
Words by April Clare Welsh
Since its inception five years ago, Lisbon’s Príncipe has gone from strength to strength. Now a contemporary club powerhouse in its own right, Príncipe’s commitment to championing the ideas, identities, sounds and beats of the Portuguese capital and its Luso-African diaspora doesn’t detract from the label’s innovating power, or make for any less variety, instead acting like sonic glue that binds hard and fast.
This year the killer releases have come thick and fast: Príncipe grande dame Nídia’s Nídia é Má, Nídia é Fudida LP was among our favorites of the year; DJ K30, DJ NinOo and Puto Andersons’s Firma do Txiga took tarraxinha to new places and newcomer DJ Lycox impressed us with his hypnotic debut album Sonhos & Pesadelos. What’s more, the beautiful hand-painted artwork from Príncipe’s in-house designer Márcio Matos continues to go above and beyond what’s expected from any label in 2017.
Words by Xlr8r staff
Since the beginning of the decade, Príncipe Discos have been representing the Lisbon area’s dance music styles—batida, kizomba, kuduro, tarraxo, tarraxinha—with records and parties and its artists touring the world. With Firma do Txiga released in June and DJ Lycox’s and Nídia Minaj’s excellent LPs after, Príncipe remains wonderfully relevant and explosive to the global dance scene. The beautifully presented three 7” disc release with a hand-painted sleeve features the music of K30, NinOo, and Puto Anderson, members of the Come Close crew, and runs from wistful tarraxinha to breakneck joyful hellfire that makes techno sound conservative.
“Nídia é Má, Nídia é Fudida” is up on #6 at this Rolling Stone year end list
Words by Charles Aaron
Lisbon-born, Bordeaux-based DJ/bedroom producer Nídia Sukulbembe, formerly known as Nídia Minaj, is a prodigious avatar of batida, the latest mutation of sweat-beading-on-your-synths dance music pinballing out of Portugal and across the Afro-diaspora. Her second album’s title roughly translates as “Nídia is Bad, Nídia is Dope,” and opening track “Muihier Profissional” is a controlled rat-a-tat fanfare announcing her as all of the above. Frantically giddy like splintered reggaeton, Nidia’s syncopated bursts come at you fast, but so does her emotional core. On “I Miss My Ghetto” (specifically, Lisbon’s Vale De Amoreira neighborhood), she splashes a vocal hiccup across mournful piano chords and digitally scrambled congas to create an eerie, time-shift effect like Chicago footwork. Nídia’s ability to deftly fracture global dance styles into glowing postcards is her unique gift to the world.