Friday, February 15, 2008

CD Review - Percussion Maddness - Luisito Quintero

Venezuelan percussionist Luisito Quintero might not be a household name, but in the small world of New York's Latin music fraternity he's regarded as one of the hottest timbaleros in town.

After starting out in the Symphonic Orchestra of Venezuela and a stint with salsa singer La India, Quintero learnt the finer points of Afro-Cuban drumming by playing alongside a string of Latin music legends, including Oscar D'Leon and Eddie Palmieri.

But while Quintero pays homage to his mentors on some banging tracks dedicated to the late Tito Puente and Ray Barreto, the CD as a whole carries the stamp of house DJ and producer "Li'l" Louie Vega, one half of New York duo Masters at Work.

The deep-house, acid jazz and silky bossa grooves are very much in the vein of Louie Vega's albums Nuyorican Soul and Elements of Life, both of which Quintero played on.

Vega is sometimes accused of over-producing tracks to the point of emasculation and the breathy vocal on "Our Love" by Cape Verdian singer Anane - Lil' Louie's latest squeeze - is so smooth it comes close to muzak.

But lightweight? I don't think so. A Fela Kuti number with Cameroonian singer-guitarist Francis Mbappe hits all the right Afrobeat buttons and a faithful reproduction of Ray Barreto's seminal track "Acid" is a fitting tribute.

Overall, the sheer quality of the guest turns by pianist Hilton Ruiz, flautist Nestor Torres and Venezuelan guitarist Aquiles Baez make this a treat for music fans seeking more than the typical salsa descargas on offer from many Latin combos at the moment.

Track listing:
1. Percussion Maddness
2. Tumbao
3. M'Bongi
4. Gbagada, Gbagada, Gbogodo, Gbogodo (feat. Francis Mbappe)
5. Aquilas Coisas Todas
6. Our Love (feat. Anane)
7. Quintero's Jam (feat. Hilton Ruiz)
8. EOL Intro (Clap Your Hands)
9. Acid
10. Four Beat Mambo
11. Son Montuno
12. Oshagriña (feat. Milton Cardona and The Aranla Chorus)
13. Love Remains The Same

To buy the album click here:

Video: Percussion Maddness - Luisito Quintero

No comments: