Thursday, February 21, 2008
CD Review: Venezuelan Zinga Son Vol 1 - Amigos Invisibles
UPDATE: Los Amigos Invisibles win their first Latin Grammy for the album "Commercial"
Venezuelan party poppers cook up some Saturday night dance fever
Growing up in the Caribbean, in a country awash with merengue and salsa, Los Amigos Invisibles swam against the tide and immersed themselves in the British acid-jazz scene and US rare grooves. The result was a string of irreverent party tracks that shot them to the top of the Latin American charts.
It also got them noticed by David Byrne's Luaka Bop label, which put out their second release "The New Sound of the Venezuelan Gozadera" and introduced them to a global audience.
On their fourth album, "The Venezuelan Zinga Son Vol. 1", the band continues to buck prevailing trends with a retro-feast of disco, lounge, bossa and 70s-style salsa.
Just as dance music cedes its crown to hip hop and guitar bands, the group have hooked up with New York house legends Kenny "Dope" Gonzalez and Lil’ Louie Vega, better known as Masters at Work (MAW), to help them recreate an underground 80s dance sound.
The result is a slow burning album which will impress newcomers with its smooth production values, but which keeps faithful fans waiting for classic "amigos" moments.
The showpiece of the MAW collaboration is "Ease Your Mind", a remake of rare disco classic by Touchdown from 1982, which shows off the skills of keyboardist Armando Figueredo. Listen out for the percussion breaks by Venezuelan timbables-player Luisito Quintero, who has worked closely with La India and Eddie Palmieri and recently put out his own album with Louie Vega: "Percussion Maddness".
The real fun begins with "Calne" (literally, "Meat") and "Esto es Lo Que hay" ("That's All There Is"), two stand-up-and-stomp, salsa-tinged tracks that benefit from the trombone of Jimmy Bosch and Julio Briceno's cheeky vocals.
But the guaranteed party warmers have to be "Majunche", which sounds like a remix of a track from their first album, and the irrepressible "Superfucker".
If this is all there is, we're gonna have a funking good time.
1. Rico Pa' Goza'
2. Comodon Johnson
3. Una Disco Llena
4. Venezuelan Zingason
5. Playa Azul
6. Ease Your Mind
9. Ojos Cerrando
10. Esto Es Lo Que Hay
12. Mambo Chimbo
17. Las Gorditas De Mario
To download Los Amigos Invisibles MP3 tracks click here:
To buy the CD "The Venezuelan Zinga Son, Vol. 1" click here:
To buy the new CD "Commercial" click here:
More videos of Los Amigos Invisibles:
Video: Los Amigos Invisibles - Mentiras
Video: Los Amigos Invisibles - Diablo
Video: Los Amigos Invisibles - Cuchi Cuchi
Video: Los Amigos Invisibles - Playa Azul
Video: Max and Jason have lunch with Los Amigos Invisibles
CD Review: Arepa 3000 - Los Amigos Invisibles