A sonic awakening: Loto Audio and Funktion-One in Mexico

“Some of the first gigs we did here in Mexico with Funktion-One included the Ometeotl Festival and Picnic Festival,” said Loto Audio’s Ramon Salazar. “All of the industry professionals were initially very sceptical about the Funktion-One system and the amount of speakers. Then when they heard it and experienced the sound; all the negative comments suddenly became congratulations.”

Mexico is one of the world’s most important places for electronic music parties and festivals – and Loto Audio and Funktion-One have played a critical role in furthering that reputation. From the recent launch surrounding Australian punk funk band Parcels’ latest album to high-profile festivals, Salazar and partner Alexander Danielewicz are enhancing the sonic experience of country’s most exciting parties.

“Funktion-One’s brand name, ethos, vibe and the spirit behind the products are fantastic,” commented Salazar. “The simple act of listening to a Funktion-One speaker does the marketing and sales job for us.”

Danielewicz agreed: “The brand reputation and performance really sets the difference for our gigs over here.”

Both Salazar and Danielewicz kicked off their musical adventures as impressionable teenagers. Danielewicz was influenced by his parents’ love for eighties music and an early stint in front of a mixing desk in a school classroom. Salazar began DJing at parties when he was just 14.

“The world of professional audio always captivated me,” he revealed. “But I realised early on that if I kept DJing at that level, it would never provide the lifestyle I dreamt of. So I decided to study audio engineering on a professional level instead.”

This move combined with an epiphany in the clubbing mecca of Berlin inspired Salazar to set up his own pro-audio venture. Like so many who make it into Berghain, he had a life-changing moment on the club’s legendary dancefloor.

“During that time of my life I worked with another reputable loudspeaker manufacturer but then I heard Funktion-One and fell in love with their products,” he explained. “When I stepped into the middle of the dancefloor that night I was so impressed; I was determined to have Funktion-One in my life and bring it to Mexico.”

Danielewicz met Salazar on a sound course, then again at a trade show in Mexico. As time passed, the pair became friends and Danielewicz was invited to join the company. His first gig was a challenging experience at the Social Festival in Mexico City.

“The venue was a military sports complex with the main stage, an indoor equestrian show jumping arena, and a similar-sized second stage,” he said. “The main stage featured a stacked Vero rig (as a ground support structure wouldn’t fit) and the second stage was fitted with a stacked Res 5 system.

As I started measuring and tuning the system, I was applying tons of EQ. Salazar told me to listen with and without the EQ filtering and to trust my ears. That’s when I became aware of the power of the system I was dealing with.”

In October 2023, Loto Audio supplied the Funktion-One sound for Australian band Parcels’ ‘Live Vol. 2’ album launch in Mexico City. Parcels were initially a guitar-based group but a move to Berlin and a love for the dancefloor loosened them up, pushing their sound into more electronic and improvisational spaces.

“The band chose Mexico City for their party as they had fallen in love with the city’s diversity and bohemian lifestyle in previous tours,” said Danielewicz. “After understanding the venue’s needs and the artistic concept, we specified an Evo 7T system with F221 bass stacked for the performance. The venue was very reverberant but with the right positioning and tuning we managed to get it sounding really good.”

German DJ and producer Claptone was another high-profile party starter to visit Mexico whose sound was catered for by Funktion-One and Loto Audio.

“As they wanted to have the barricade very close to the stage, we opted for an asymmetric bass array with a fifteen element F221 delta array on stage right,” recalled Danielewicz. “Then we had three F132 accompanied by three F221 on stage left. Nine boxes of Vero per side took care of the main system and PSM12 for front fill. The gig went flawlessly.”

With these recent success stories under their belt, Loto Audio is now experiencing one of the busiest times of the year with DJs and promoters heading to Mexico for winter sun. Among the events in their calendar is Day Zero, a three-stage rave in the middle of the jungle, and Bahidorá and Electric Daisy Carnival in February 2024. Despite the demanding schedule, the pair are optimistic about keeping the wheels turning effectively.

“High season in Tulum involves very complex logistics,” concluded Salazar. “But as long as we plan ahead as per previous experiences, I trust it will be perfect.”