Monday, September 17, 2012

CILANTRO BOOMBOX-Self Titled (independent, 2012)

Here in the US a lot of people equate cilantro to Latin cousine. I don't know man, I didn't even know about cilantro's existence until I moved to California and tried Mexican food for the first time. I'm pretty sure we didn't have that back the southern extreme of the continent.
So maybe it's a Mexican thing. But this guy here with the boombox, he's from Venezuela so I don't know, maybe he discovered cilantro when he relocated to Texas, where the band is based, or maybe Venezuelans eat cilantro too. I have no fucking idea. It doesn't really matter anyway, the band's name and cover art have plenty of this parsley-wannabe herb, but I didn't find any reference to it on the music, which does not taste like Tex-Mex tacos, at all.
In fact, to me it tasted a lot more like arepas (my knowledge of Venezuelan food is limited to that) because the first reference that came to mind when I listened to their first promotional single was Los Amigos Invisibles. I was like yeah, this is the same brand of Latin funky stuff that explicitly targets the ladies at the party with the common horndog I-wanna-fuck you message, but with a lot more emphasis on the hard-hitting breaks, which transpired some level of hip-hop alliance. The only other thing I knew about this record was that it was mixed by Texan über-producer and contender for the busiest-man-in-show-bizz title Adrián Quesada. It was actually that what initially captivated my interest, since I pretty much love everything that guy puts out.
Then I got the CD and I was surprised to find a lot more stuff that didn't quite matched my initial preconceptions based on the single. There were some 80's sounds, plenty of afro-latin arrangements, some bilingual rap with positive message, some interesting spaced-out interludes, and yes more party-oriented bangers with cliched lyrics. My favorite tracks, as usual, are the instrumentals, like the afro-funky "De Carora a South Congress" and the trippy güiro-driven "Ya Ta Bueno." That besides their single "Last Call," which I already liked. Those made it into my DJ playlist at first listen.
Overall a promising debut for a new project bringing some fresh ideas to the table and pointing into the right direction. I definitely wanna see this growing and for that they need your support, so go ahead and buy their CD.

Buy it HERE.

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