June 21, 2014

Salsa De Hoy: An Independent Salsa Caliente Compilation

ARTIST: various artists
TITLE: Salsa De Hoy: An Independent Salsa Caliente Compilation
LABEL: Discos De Hoy
Richmonders know all about Bio Ritmo (track 4), the hometown salsa band whose appeal goes well beyond the hard-core Latin music audience and who market themselves the way an indie rock band would do. Well, there’s an international cohort of similar nueva generacion salsa groups, and this compilation is a fine introduction to ten of them. Start with track 1 by Tromboranga from Barcelona, who are updating the trombone-heavy, soulful sound made popular by Willie Colon (Latin music’s original punk rocker). The members of Puerto Rico’s Orquesta El Macabeo started in punk and reggae before gravitating to salsa – their song here (2) is impossibly catchy, a great summer listen. My other favorites here are Clandeskina from Cali, Colombia (salsa’s center of gravity right now), whose track (9) has a throwback vibe that resolves into a drum break and a scorching guitar solo, and Ocho Y Media from Paris (they laughingly bill themselves as “French sauce makers”) who let it all hang out on 10. The whole collection is superb and all these bands have additional recordings – there’s plenty more indie salsa to check out.
TOP TRACKS:    1    2    4    9    10
ALSO RECOMMENDED:    3    5    6    7    8

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