April 21, 2011

Gozalo! Bugalu Tropical, Volume 4

ARTIST:  various artists
TITLE:  Gozalo! Bugalu Tropical, Volume 4
LABEL:  Vampisoul
REVIEW:  Vampisoul’s Gozalo! series is a real treat -- few of us had any idea how much top quality Afro-Cuban music was produced in Peru in the 60’s and 70’s.  It’s a natural complement to The Roots Of Chicha compilations on Barbes, which focus on cumbia-based material that’s heavily influenced by Colombia and Mexico.  In contrast, the emphasis in all four volumes of Gozalo! is on the popular Cuban-derived styles like mambo, guaracha, son montuno, descarga, charanga and of course boogaloo.  As with the previous three volumes, there are more worthwhile tracks here than I can recommend; of special note are a couple of great novelty songs (5 and 21), one stray chicha number that slipped in here (6), and an absolutely killer version of Hector Lavoe’s “Aguanile” (26).  These bands really are just as good as the ones in Havana or New York City at the same time; we just never got to hear them back then.  Kudos to Vampisoul and the compilers, and here’s to hoping they have enough material for another four volumes.
REVIEWER:  Bill Lupoletti
TOP TRACKS:    5    6    14    20    21    26
ALSO RECOMMENDED:    Most of the rest of them

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