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Karimba by Novalima
Released: Jan 2012
Label: ESL Music, Inc.
Four albums in and Novalima has finessed its always-fascinating project into a sound that's both tradition-steeped and novel. Karimba's first half delves more deeply into its Afro-Peruvian folk touchstones than ever, expertly spinning through a festejo here, pulsing with classic landó rhythms there ("Revolucion") -- even as it hipsterizes them with a sleek, clubby sheen. But beginning with "Zarambe," things get downright experimental as donkey jaw rattles fade into shivering beats, cajón thumps meet dub bass, and the world goes avant-ambient-trippy on "Luna Ciega."
Rachel Devitt

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