Friday, March 1, 2013

LOS AMIGOS INVISIBLES-Repeat After Me (Nacional Records, 2013)

The horniest Venezuelans are back with some more of their usual funky disco shit. I've written plenty about them in the past, and particularly about my love-hate relationship with their music and their audience. So I'm gonna skip that, since it all pretty much remains the same. 
It's understandable that after the great reception of their Grammy-awarded album Commercial they'd keep exploring that same line and come out with another album of purposely commercial pop songs. No disappointment there. 
Sure, my DJ/digger background begs for more deep funk, more risky fusions with Latin tropical genres (totally absent in this album) and if it's not too much asking at least some percussion breaks. But I know I can't expect that from them in their current phase when they seem so committed to perfecting the radio-friendly song formula (they got Cachorro López as a producer to guarantee that, once again). 
At least they keep surprising me with a few unexpected choices. Like evoking the classic Motown groove of The Supremes' "You Can't Hurry Love" on the bass-line of the blatantly '80s pop tune that kicks off this new album after a hilarious intro that exclusively Spanish-speakers will get. And then there's that oddball of a song, properly titled "Mostro," that probably started as an inside-joke in the rehearsal studio with them pretending to be the cantina band from Star Wars, Episode IV. It's wacky as hell, but my inner nerd connects with them in those weird places, the same weird places that I know the hot Latinas in short dresses that pack all their live concerts will most probably never understand.
Other than that, my favorite moment in their album is, as it's usually the case, when the singer gets the fuck off the stage and lets the band do their funky shit. In Repeat After Me that happens once, on "Robot Love," the track that has the most chances at entering my DJ sets. 
What I noticed about these guy's evolution is that now that they've fully incorporated English lyrics to their repertoire, for some reason they leave all the horny, lewd content for the Spanish-language songs and the English ones are more generic, about forbidden love and cheesy stuff like that. The only explanation I can postulate for this is that since they moved to the US some of them married monolingual English-speaking wives and they don't want them to find out what they're really singing about (ie. anal sex) when they go on tour and pack rooms full of hot chicks. 
Anyway, the rest of the album is pretty much typical Los Amigos Invisibles, although it overall leans more onto the '80s than the '70s sound that was their recognizable trait early in their carrer.  I guess this is what works the best for them at this point and what pleases their loyal fan-base the most. So, good for them. Keep on repeating after yourselves. 

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