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Product: Audio CD
Title: Bajofondo Tango Club
Label: Universal Latino
Artist: Bajofondo Tango Club
Rating: 3/5
Customer rating - 3 out of 5
Speaking from tangoland


Hola. I thought I would let you know you that although BF made its way through the corporate hallways into a place where we all can see it (Grammy blah blah) thanks to Santaolalla who has indeed produced many of the best "latin" albums (and I can't help saying "latin music" is quite a stupid, blurring label but oh well...), BF is actually composed mainly of Uruguayan musicians that he met while producing their records.
Most important are Ex-hip-hoppers-turned-DJs Campo(donico) from Peyote Asesino and Luciano Supervielle from Platano Macho (by the way, they were quite ahead of the rap-hiphop-metal wave with their seminal bands, together with a number of other "latin music" bands back in the days). They perform the live DJ acts while Santaolalla seems to deal mainly with the corporate/marketing side.
The album has a song written by Jorge Drexler too (campo produced his records adding a fitting, subtle electronica background to his modern version of regional music like candombe, regional folk, etc. - check that out as a side dish if you can) The song is quite good and is sung by Adriana Varela, a great Argie singer with a great raspy voice. Check her solo albums too. That's real tango, no electronica there.
Santaolalla is actually quite useless onstage, but somehow he always seems to be there when things happen musically in these latitudes (Vela Puerca, Cafe Tacuba, Peyote Asesino, Divididos, etc.) so I give him credit.
As for the record itself, I agree with the criticism above although I do own it and like it. I got it stage-side after seeing them play without an idea of what I was going to see.
The album is a first, more or less basic exploration of electronica for these people and yes, I felt it didn't live up to my expectations when it comes to having the spirit and strenght of real tango as we know it here (tango is as much from Montevideo as it is from BsAs). The breaking-up of too-short tango samples to match the underlying non-tango beats leave a sweetener kind of aftertaste in your mouth. Not quite the natural, smooth blending one would expect (as was the case with the countless bossa/electronica experiences around).
Actually, the record's best moment is near the end, in a song where suddenly all the electronica stops to leave a solo bandoneon for some seconds. That works a treat and you find yourself waiting for it to happen again. But hey, that's just tango! Just a sample from an old tango record! So that's what I mean, the tango is enhanced by the contrast of the sudden change, and maybe we would not have liked the rest of the original tango song, granted, but still, it feels like much much more can be done. That's not entirely bad, being this one of the two first records in the genre. Hooking but not entirely satisfactory, leaves you wanting for more to come.
I also feel the other one, Gotan Project has less quality, a certain amateurish feeling, particularly in the vocal and lyrics department, wich you might not perceive if you are not familiar with the way we speak in the Rio de la Plata (Montevideo - Buenos Aires area, tango central). The girl doesn't sound like she's a tango singer. Must be the phrasing, I don't know. Maybe she is a tango person but still feels a bit lost in electronica. Something's missing to me anyway.
But hey, we are talking about just 2 records, so get both and as others said here, let's wait for this movement to get a little bit more solid. You can count on many of these records poping up in the area in the near future. It always works like that down here. The popcorn syndrome.
My 3 stars are actually 3.6 or something like that. Not 4, but just to leave room for that very special album yet to come.
Maybe it would be good to drop Santaolalla and get the french electronica guy behind Gotan working with the real tangueros from BF and Campo and Supervielle's rithm and songwriting instincts. That would be a good one.
Anyway, eso es todo. Enjoy it.



Product: Audio CD
Title: Let The Buyer Beware
Label: Shout! Factory
Artist: Lenny Bruce
Rating: 5/5
Customer rating - 5 out of 5
Release of the Lenny Bruce boxset is a cultural EVENT


As a long-time fan of Lenny Bruce's work I have collected every available recording and book on the man and his art. The Lenny Bruce boxset, LET THE BUYER BEWARE, is a cultural event as important as a trunk filled with unpublished Mark Twain novels being unearthed. LET THE BUYER BEWARE presents over 7 hours of Lenny Bruce material, much of which has never been released in any form. As a hardcore fan, I was amazed to find virtually no overlap between this boxset and previously released Lenny Bruce albums.
As for the comedy on this boxset, Lenny Bruce has never been more relevant, never more hilarious, as he lampoons santimonious religious and political leaders, gives frank and insightful opinions about the art of comedy and who the "real" comedians of his time were. Lenny himself does not escape his incisive eye and satire as one track on Disc 2 has him reading a scathing review his nightclub act received, admitting to the audience how the review rankled him.
LET THE BUYER BEWARE is much more than a "Best of" Lenny Bruce. It provides tremendous scope of this comic genius' career, from his very early apperance on THE ARTHUR GODFREY show (winning the talent contest for that week) to his being warned by a police officer to keep his nightclub act "clean" while performing in a particular city.
To this fan, the single most poignant track in the entire boxset comes on Disc 6 when Lenny explains how "I Picked on the Wrong God." Lenny is never maudlin, but introspective and painfully honest as he assesses what has been about his outlook and nightclub act that ignited his myriad legal troubles.
It's easy to cast Lenny Bruce as a philosopher, as a martyr for freedom of speech, but I think Lenny's assessment of himself is most apt: "I'm not a comedian. I'm Lenny Bruce." His brand of insight and satire was so singular, it cannot be summed up as simply "comedy." It was no mere entertainment, nor was he simply pontificating from a nightclub stage. Lenny Bruce opened himself before his audience unlike any performer at that time, and like few have since then.
Very special thanks must go to Lenny's daughter Kitty Bruce for making this material available. LET THE BUYER BEWARE is the Dead Sea Scrolls of contemporary culture. Whether Lenny Bruce discussed the Kennedy assassination, the death of Marylin Monroe, St. Paul, or LBJ, he expresses his thoughts with a rare and abiding honesty and hilarity.
For anyone interested in the art of Lenny Bruce -- whether you saw the man perform during the 1950s and '60's -- or have no idea what the fuss is about, get your copy of LET THE BUYER BEWARE and listen to a man whose work has been compared to Jonathan Swift and Mark Twain. Hear the words of what most people consider to be the greatest comedian of the 20th Century.
--Matthew St. Amand author of AS MY SPARKS FLY UPWARD and FOREVER & A DAY... www.matthewstamand.com



Product: Audio CD
Title: No Strings Attached
Label: Jive
Artist: *NSYNC
Rating: 1/5
Customer rating - 1 out of 5
N*sync blows it, as usual


Well, when I first heard that N'SYNC was going to a have new CD out, I thought to myself, " Oh no, not another one". Then hwen I heard their song on the radio, " Bye, Bye, Bye" I thought to myself, " I need this CD," Now, there is only one word I can say, Woo Hoo!!! Okay, thats two words but who's counting. This CD was awsome!!! Now I am totally in love with N'SYNC. I even have tickets to go to there concert in Ohio on July 14
And one more thing, Joey Fatone I love you. :X



Product: Audio CD
Title: Into the Light
Label: Dragonshead
Artist: David Coverdale
Rating: 3/5
Customer rating - 3 out of 5
Out of the darkness, and...


Made in UK in 2000, Serial# D-001, Playing Time 60:19
This CD is DC's 3rd solo album, and sees him returning to the musical genres he explored of his first 2 solo albums back in the late 70's.
The energy varies greatly: mostly into rock and blues-rock, DC demonstrates he can still sing. This is a giant step away from his "glorious" Whitesnake days: the only power you'll hear is in the vocals.
I didn't find the melodies, the arrangements, or the musicianship to be particularly original or interesting. But he's got a great voice, full of soul and emotion.
If you're expecting tracks like on the "Whitesnake aka 1987" album, or even "Restless Heart", this disc is not for you; but if you like songs like "Too Many Tears" and "Love Is Blind", newly re-recorded for this album, you'll enjoy this!