La Tecnologia, BARAJA

In the age where most of our conversations take place over the phone or online, society has lost its' amiable nature and ability to connect in person. When a concert experience is lost or tainted by a recording on a cellphone, how does a musician engage their fans or help them disconnect? How does quality art get noticed in an extensive feed of pictures and videos on Instagram or Facebook? How does an artist get discovered with a lack of social media followers? 

Artists and musicians are retaliating against social media and voicing their opinions on infrastructure technology through their contemplative artwork and experimental music. Popular music with frequent radio play and music video views discusses topics of the fear of missing out and how to only live once. However, numerous DIY artists are discussing the dubious topics of politics, societal injustices, and the harms of social media and technology. South Florida's BARAJA conveys these controversial discussions in their Alternative and Spanish Rock tracks. Their bullish singles project a world that has been turned around by modern hindrances such as losing touch with reality due to lack of confidence or social interaction.

The Latin group, BARAJA, is inspired by their life experiences and witnessing disturbing human behaviors such as seeing people waste their days trying to obtain the perfect "selfie." They are heavily influenced by Ska, Punk, Reggae, and Psychedelic Rock. Their band name, "Baraja," is inspired by the Spanish word for a deck of cards which they utilize as a clever logo for business cards. The playful band members are JP Alegria (singer and guitarist), Jairo Rincon (drummer), and Cesar Sanchez (bassist)

The amusing band members met at a screening of “Jurassic World,” and they instantly became friends. Their musical ambitions were ignited when they went to the Foo Fighters' concert in Atlanta, Georgia. After the exhilarating concert, they discussed starting a band and began practicing in a storage warehouse. Their drummer, Jairo, then moved from Venezuela to Miami, Florida. The process of recording their EP took three months between recording, mastering, and distributing.

Their rousing track “Neptuno” discusses how society is obsessively focused on technology. "You’re living an illusion or just being part of what’s going on," said Cesar. The enlivening track mocks the usage of cellphones and technological devices. "It is a song that is meant to create awareness about how people are living double lives on their cellphone. People are addicted to their cellphone, when you go to a concert, everyone is recording and you miss out on the moment. Social media is the modern day drug, Opium. Companies and social media platforms desire to show users what they need or what they should want to be happy, " said Cesar.

The elevating track “Mundo Al Revés” stands for the world in reverse. The lyrics mock society's lust for only living once. The catchy instrumental melodies captivate the listener while providing an insightful message. “Social media is a platform in which people consume envy. To see what other people are doing. You’re selling envy. Social media aids in obtaining ego and envy. Companies are making a lot of money out of bad values. I have seen people waste the whole day to take a great picture.” said Cesar

The vitalizing track “Cuando Llegue Abril” discusses love gained and loved lost. The romantic melody depicts lovers in love and falling out their heartening romance. "It's a song about when you're in a relationship and you’re trying to get out of it because you fell out of love," said JP.

The trio recorded the three stirring songs on their latest EP release, "La Tecnologia." They self recorded the EP at Heiga studios in Downtown Miami, Florida. Adrian Morales-Demori mixed their EP. It was mastered by Ricardo Sangiao from World Class Mastering and it was distributed by Record Union. 

BARAJA's brand new collection of experimental tracks will be released in the middle of 2018. Their Spanish Rock album is based on the concept of bringing back passionate music played from the human soul. "In the 90's Latin Music industry, there was an abundance of influential Spanish groups such as Soda Stereo and Heroes del Silencio. Their Alternative Rock music was sincere. Nowadays, bands and record labels are putting out fast food music. In contemporary Latin Commercial songs, they all sound and sing the same.” said JP Algeria. “In Latin America, there is an audience that wants to hear genuine Alternative Rock music. If you go to Spotify, you can discover great music from various countries. However, these artists are not breaking through the ice. We believe that we have to keep pushing barriers,” said Cesar. “We want to make music that makes people talk about a controversial topic. We need to talk about what we are going through right now as a community in our artistic platforms,” said Jairo.

BARAJA are currently in the studio recording the tracks for their upcoming album which will be released next year. The reflective album will combine a fusion of genres and elaborate jam sessions. “The three of us were raised in South America, all the music you are hearing is combined from our influences. We are subconsciously influenced by Salsa and Merengue since we listen to those riffs in songs. You can say our music is Latin influenced with a Punk Rocker Soul,” said Jairo. 

Visit BARAJA on Instagram and Facebook for more information and tour dates. Listen to their music at Bandcamp, iTunes, Spotify, and YouTube.

Artist Feature and Photography by Veronica Potes

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