Estudios Hispánicos: eMusic Labels from the Iberian Peninsula and Latin America

edited August 20 in International

Glad for the positive reception of EAS last week.  Here’s a guide for navigating the overwhelming number of labels on eMusic from regions speaking Spanish and/or Portuguese.  Just like the previous list, I hope it show’s there’s still A LOT of interesting music on the site.  

This’ll be more dense and less country-specific b/c I don’t want to look up the individual countries involved.  Again, despite downloading from several of these, “Recommended for You” just keeps pushing the same 5-10 labels and artists, so I expect these will be new for lots of folks on the forum as well.  They’re in approximate descending order of my personal interest, except for the Overflow section (enter at your own risk), with main styles and specific recommendations in parentheses.  If your tastes align with college radio, I think you should be able to find something worth downloading from most of the “favorite” labels below 1. En español, 2. In Portuguese, 3. Overlap, or 4. Favoritos Individuales.  And for the monolingual, don’t despair!  This is decidedly NOT just a list of world music.  Not understanding the lyrics shouldn’t be a problem in your favorite genres or where there are no lyrics to understand, right?

En español:  Terrícolas Imbéciles (rock, pop…Juana Molina, Austin TV); Jabalina (pop); Potoco Discos (hip-hop, electronic); CVRA LVDORVM (rock, pop, world, hip-hop, experimental); Humo (99 cent bargains); Enchufada (electronic, pop); El Templo ReKords (prog rock, jazz, fusion); Artesa de Arte (folk, rock); Hueso (electronic…TV on the Radio fans see “Oido”); CHT Muzik (world, jazz, rock); Beast Discos (rock); Raiz Discos (pop, rock…far-out stuff from Bubu labeled “industrial”); Orion (electronica…favorite is Prototipo);  FOL Musica (folk); Matraca (electronic); Ground Control (synth-pop & rock EPs…try The Parrots);  SubmarinoAtomico (rock, jazz, blues, reggae, world); Discos del Saladillo (rock); Discos de Kirlian (rock); Bost Espacio Creativo (jazz, flamenco); Kuai (jazz); Balaio (jazz); Calle 54 (jazz); Armatoste Brazo Discográfico (rock, pop…all titles only 99 cents!); El Dromedario (gitano, rock); Red Poncho Producciones (rock, pop, jazz); Esmerarte (rock); Merca (folk, rock, jazz, pop); Sello Azul (folk, pop); Severalia (Spanish folk); That’s All Music (pop, rock, jazz, folk); cdcopiadvd (folk); decimulabs (novelty, experimental); musicadelsur (folk, pop); LOWFREQMX (drum & bass); Mass Records (pop); Ouvirmos (folk, new classical…try Zoar albums); Oveja Negra (oldies, jazz, rock); Sello Fisura (hip-hop, rock…try Arias); Roof Cat (punk, metal, pop); Vir (regions of Spain, with attitude…hip-hop, punk, folk, jazz); Áureo Rex (Hard rock but also try Gallo Lobo, La Perra); Rootsound (Eskorzo & Los 300); Little Red Corvette (pop, hip-hop, jazz, rock, electronic); Cassette Alternativo (alt. rock… try Vallow, Liz Unphair) A NEW LABEL (hard rock, metal, punk); Monqui Albino (indie rock); El Genio Equivocado (alt. rock); Triquinoise (hard and older rock); Flor y Nata (rock); Dragora (rock); Chavalote (lots of folks comparing Niño Mercurio to MBV); Mascarpone (experimental); Gandula (rock); Suite Soprano (hip-hop); La Vendicion (hip-hop); Chilevision (folk, rock); Arrhythmia (electronic); Sello Misisipi (blues); Takeo (jazz, folk, and assuredly the only label that’s on both this list and the East Asian one)

In Portuguese:  Sagitta (pop); Groovie (vintage tropicalia…I don’t know why fans of Os Mutantes aren’t raving about this one constantly); Rock It! (synth-pop, pop, and yes, some rock though on the softer side); Dan Dada (dub, electronic, rap); Audio Porto (jazz, rock, electronic); Music in My Soul Portugal (pop, rock); Kimahera (folk, pop, hip-hop, rock, electronic); Tradisom (traditional folk from Portugal problematic for the “world music” versus folk divide); Dope Muzik (rap); Miranda Records Brazil (pop, rock); Music for All (rock, pop, world); Monstro Discos (hard rock, nu-rock); Toca Discos (hard rock…mostly singles); Música Global Discográfica S.L (pop); Big Bit Música (hip-hop); Elemess (pop, rock, electronic); (jazz, folk)

Overlap (en ambas o varias lenguas):  aCentral Folque (folk, world, jazz); Barbes (world); Cambra (world, pop, rock); Microscopi (rock, folk, world, pop); Several (world); Arcadia (pop, rock); Thot (hip-hop)

Favoritos Individuales (Still on the site in Aug.’19, either alone on their “label” or not on a Hispanic/Latin label…I know this the internet, but all you white supremacists out there need to cool it with the “invasion” language y abrazar la música already!):  “Unbalanced:  Concerto for Ensemble” - Moisés P. Sánchez, 2019 [jazz].  “S/t” - Atropolis, 2011 [electronic]; Los Amigos Invisibles [electronic]; Gilberto Gil (lots out there) [folk]; Manu Chao [synth pop/folk]; “No Podemos Volver a Casa” - Mirafiori, 2006 [soft rock]; “Mono Y Toro EP” - Son of Run, 2012 [lounge/electronic]; “Vozero” - Phil Manzanera (rock); “Dulce Compañia” - DJ Python, 2017; 

Overflow (Alphabetically, with tons of titles—easily over 10k—which aren’t my favorites but could be yours, while sustaining long exploration…please report back your findings!):  Abdel la Esencia TRES (dancehall); Abstract Mechanisms (techno); Ace Music (pop, reggae, rock, electronic); Alberri (oldies); Altafonte; Alvo (rock); Analaga (folk, pop, hip-hop); ANAOH (techno); ANDINA INC. (oldies greatest hits); Antequera (oldies); Astro; Astro Discos; Athens of the North; Atresmusica; Autoproducido (a bit of everything); B9 Records (hip-hop); Beastiful (country, folk, electronic); Beathey (house); BeToYou (pop, hip-hop); Blanco Sur (rock); Boa Musica (hip-hop, pop); Bringing Music to Life; Capitan Simio (rock); Caribe Music dos (oldies); CHR (pop, mariachi, rock); Cinquillo; Clap Clap (alt. rock); Cobo; Colombo (pop); Conalmusica (Mexican pop salsa); Cuatro Vientos (new age); Dbn; Deepna (house); Dinastia Inc. (oldies); Discos de la Bahia; Discos Fuentes (oldies, pop, salsa orchestras); Discos Humeantes (punk rock); Discos TRUS (oldies); Discos Walden (rock); Discotoni (old salsa); Don Juan Global Market (salsa, pop, hip-hop); Dora Black (hip-hop); 829Music Mundial LLC (pop, salsa); Eclesiastés Studio (Christian punk); El Segell del Primavera; EO! Música (soft rock like Matchbox20); Ernie; ESPANTAPAJAROS (rock, pop vocalists); Esongs Entertainment (mariachi, oldies, cheesy stuff);  Estudios Multitrack; FAK; Fono Astur; Globomedia Musica; Great Touch-Pow (old salsa); Guarida Sónica (pop, folk); Halcon (old salsa & mariachi); Hall of Fame; IFO Producciones (pop, hip-hop); Imagenes (funk, R&B); Illegal Alien (techno); Independiente/Independiente Music; Indigo; Indie; JBC (metal); Jesus Manuel (pop); Jose Luis Alvarez-Svetlana Novojilova Shulguina (oldies, winner of “worst record label name” here: ); Karen (oldies, pop, salsa); La Cupula; La Vanguardia (pop, electronic, rock); Lanzadera; Limbo; Media Music; Miami Moon (pop); Mojo (salsa, hip-hop, pop); Moon Records Lisboa (pop); MTM Ltda; Multitrack (adult contemporary); Mundano (rock, punk);  Names You Can Trust (Salsa, Cumbia); no label (punk); Nubenegra (world); P.M. Productions (folk); PencilBoy (house…but try Poltamento); Phorminx (oldies); Picap (1k titles with unusual amount of jazz); Pirca (rock, fusion); Puzzle Heads (house); Produlam (hard alt. rock);  Right Here Right Now; Producciones Colibrí (jazz, world, pop);  PSM (jazz, rock); Quemasucabeza; Regio Norte (Mexican salsa oldies); Renzhow Productions (pop), Rock Indiana (alt. rock); Rock y Reggae Ediciones S.A.; Santo Grial Producciones (de España in almost all genres); Secret Family (hip-hop); Semifusa Studio (alt. rock); Seres Producoes (house); SG Music (1970s-1980s pop); Sin Anestesia (pop, hip-hop); Subterfuge; Super Discos; Tañidos (classical); Tatun (house/techno); Terror Negro (electronic, hip-hop); TOV Productions (oldies); Trafalgar13 (cortometraje soundtracks); 300 Producciones (rock); TRRR Discos; Tyrell (new age, exp. elec., pop); Ultrapop; Um Passo (techno); Unicornio (oldies, world, rock); Vende (hip-hop, reggae); World Music Factory; YT Rocket (salsa, pop); Zepedabros (rock singles); Zero (rock, hard rock).

As ever, for more detailed label descriptions, see my personal site: Per the sections on the remaining label survey a week ago, more geographic lists are possible with continued gratitude.  And again, dígame the labels I’ve missed!  Every time I think I’ve found all my favorites, a few more pop up in a search, so this’ll be a work in progress like any list.  I expect Latin music enthusiasts on eMusic must outnumber East Asian fans by orders of magnitude.  In no way does the unavailability of music anyone’s heard of on eMusic resemble this classic Simpsons scene:   Were everything still available, we’d never have reason to search out these hidden gems!


  • Wow, this is great stuff. I can't wait to discover ultra-low cost stuff. (Enjoyed your Label page on your personal website btw). I came back from a break and am now sampling a lot of this stuff (my purchase list is here). Unfortunately I've been checking my wishlist from 4 months ago, and about 90% of them are missing... BTW, big fan of Onuka too. 

  • @idiotprogrammer
    There's no better feeling than having hard work appreciated, but as we all know, putting time and effort into eMusic reference material is to lead a precarious existence.  Latin 99-cent albums do seem to be more plentiful than other areas, but overall I find the quality of them to be noticeably lower, too.  From your post in the other thread, I'd really like your thoughts on the Russian labels.  I think it's time I picked up Onuka's other one.  Looks like your link is broken for your purchases, but I assume it's the one from your blog, too.
  • edited September 23
    Omnifoo, just wanted to say, I've been poring over your stuff. (While emusic has had some problems, it makes it all the more interesting to go exploring). Here's my list of emusic purchases from the past.  (Older than a year old, most of the links don't work -- albums are usually not there anymore, although sometimes if you search for them, you'll find they simply are at a new link. The May 2019 links are still good). Check out this from Feeding Tube records

    Probably something really missing now is some Ukrainian and Russian pop labels which did these budget megacompilations (which were actually great!). 

    I really appreciate your  attempt to post 1 sentence summaries/reactions on the emusic site. I've been trying to do that too, especially about the unknown stuff. 

    Fun fact: Checking out your website, I noticed you're a former Peace Corps volunteer (I am too, I served in Albania!). Not too much Albanian music on emusic though Eli Fara is on youtube. Aha, from emusic, I see this very nice 99 cent album in the traditional style and this regularly priced compilation of pre-WW2 folk music. (Hey I got hold of all Albanian music I could get my hands on, but I had never heard of pre-communist Albanian music in my life before!). 

    That 99 cent album by Albanian Gypsy Ensemble is a real keeper though. 
  • @idiotprogrammer I was actually pondering why you're so much more willing to dive into the int'l lists and labels, but the PC connection says it all--funny how buying music from strange places doesn't seem so dangerous after having actually lived in some, eh?  I knew an Albania rPCV and will ask you another time if your service years overlapped.  More importantly on musical grounds, I will definitely check out what you find lately, but I should also take heed of how frustrating it is to work from a list that's half unavailable.  Albania is a geographic black hole for me at the moment, however small, so it'll be good to hear some examples to fill it.

    The Feeding Tube bargains don't get enough credit for getting people's rock fix, and WBB is definitely among its best.  

    I definitely question whether it's worth reviewing anything on the site, knowing it could be gone tomorrow, but the int'l labels do seem to be a bit more resilient and several times more obscure/in need of leads.  For the most part, I can't get anyone to bite in the Reddit forums by country or genre, so seeing the albums I recommended at the top of the label catalogs on the site has been the only effect or gratification I'd been able to discern.  Glad to have you on the case, but I dunno how many of us it'd take to stem the tide of unsubscribing on the Reddit forum.  I really do believe there's a lot of worthwhile bargains left, and the silver lining in the overall decimation is it never would've been necessary to look for all this if all the best labels had stuck around.  Getting anyone to appreciate that is tough, though--better just send everyone to a developing country to build their courage to sample and download stuff they've never heard of from places they couldn't find on a map, no?

  • Albania-wise I was 1995-7 (BTW, corrected that youtube link for Eli Fara from previous post). I'm sure you've noticed that most of the labels have their albums on bandcamp, so you can do full previews. 
  • I have been positively flipping about the Chili punk rock band Fasat Alfa from the Armatoste Brazo Discográfico label.. ABD has 3 releases by Fasat Alfa -- but I noted that Bandcamp has pay what you want for every album on the ABD label

    My guess is that even at the low end, artists get more money from purchases on bandcamp.... 
  • @idiotprogrammer ; Was having trouble posting here for a while with the “disk full” message, but glad it seems fixed.  I took the liberty of sharing your Albanian recs on the BalkanMusic subreddit, if you don’t mind 

    I’d pretty much dismissed the stuff on “All Time Favorites” as trash compilations, but the Albanian Gypsy Ensemble proved you just can’t judge an album by its name, cover, or the label it’s on.  Nice find!

    I think my Albania rPCV friend served in the mid 2000s, so no overlap with you, and he’s a neocon, incidentally.

    I do indeed want to buy more at Bandcamp, but I definitely sympathize with your other post’s opening qualifier about escaping poverty.  Were I not without an income currently, I might well give up eMusic entirely for all it’s frustrations, but it’s still definitely the most cost-effective way to cast a wide net where I am.

    I honestly can’t keep up with all the labels, such as ABD, where I need to snap up the 99-cent stuff before the label vanishes.  I hope the int’l ones stick around a bit longer.  Punk isn’t my scene, but I’ll check out Fast Alfa and Eli Fara in due time.  It’s strange to be feasting in the middle of a famine, and I wish more would join us. 

  • @idiotprogrammer
    Remind me never to doubt your recs.  "El Mar en la Calle" is excellent, and if pressed I guess I'd have to call it punk rock.
  • @idiotprogrammer
    might be repurposing this thread to recommend things to you, but at least the first track on "Dislalia" should be of Albanian interest  A very challenging album overall, so I don't know whether to speak too highly of it.
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