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El Shaka by Los Cuates De Sinaloa
Released: Oct 2011
Label: Sony Music Latin
Los Cuates made their name by illuminating dark, stark topics and scenes with youthful vigor, but El Shaka takes that disjunct to dizzying new levels. These tracks spin around polka and waltz rhythms so fast and jovially, you'd swear the whole group was kicking up dust on the dance floor as they recorded. The warm, ragged accordion sounds gleefully drunk, the tuba swaggers, and the vocals are crooned with a blissed-out sweetnes on tracks with titles like "El Mercenario" and "El Mundo Sa Va a Acabar," where slightly dissonant, kinda crazy-town accordions hint at the dark edge of delirium.
Rachel Devitt
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