A film about Northwest hip-hop from 2018
Chong The Nomad
Chong The Nomad was one of the breakout stars from Capitol Hill Block Party this past summer. The Stranger reviewed her set, describing her techniques of live-sampling ukulele and beat-box harmonica, and also the “heavy funk beats, marbles-scrambling bass frequencies, and torqued distortion… Holy shit.” NYC’s Tom Tom Magazine suggests that “multi-instrumentalist and producer Chong the Nomad is shaping the future of dance music.”
Here’s another take:
In their annual year-end critics’ poll, The Seattle Times ranked love memo as one of the very best Seattle albums of 2018, saying:
One of Seattle music’s biggest breaths of fresh air in 2018 came from this promising young beatmaker who hip-checked her way into the dude-dominated electronic scene with her coolly minimal love memo EP, which got a vinyl release this fall on Crane City Music. The real-life Alda Agustiano’s strain of hip-hop-informed dance music weaves eerie sounds through rippling sub-bass lines, with occasional tempo shifts keeping listeners on their toes during short-burst tracks. From the tasteful dubstep-y lurch of “for tonight” to the rapturous “chest pains,” the up-and-coming producer proves a master of subtle moods, gently shaking things up the second you’re too comfortable.
Similarly, The Stranger selected love memo as one of the “Top 10 Albums of 2018,” saying that:
Over the last five years, Seattle’s become a hotbed of queer, non-male hip-hop, and relative newcomer Chong the Nomad (aka Alda Agustiano) stands as one of the scene’s potential superstars. However, her vinyl debut, love memo, isn’t strictly hip-hop, but rather a hybrid of that genre, neo-R&B, and edgy EDM. Chong the Nomad’s productions display a rare combo of emotive melodies and weird atmospheres while maintaining an off-kilter funkiness. In a feature I wrote about Agustiano, I described the seven tracks here as “more low-lit joints for intimate encounters than raucous club bangers,” but I sense that she could deviate from this steez and surprise all with her next release. I can’t wait to see where Chong the Nomad goes next.