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Album Review

Maldita Vecindad faced a daunting problem with their third album. Their previous album, El Circo, became one of the biggest, most influential rock en espanol albums of all time, and their attempts to craft a follow-up with producer Bill Laswell did not work out. Given the pressures and turmoil, it's not a surprise that Baile de Mas Caras is ultimately more of a transitional album. There are some impressive moments, but it never really coheres as a whole album. "El Chulo" is a clear sequel to El Circo's "Pachuco," but lacking the fire of the original. Indeed, the whole album seems rather lackluster, missing a potency present in previous Maldita Vecindad albums. Whether producer David Z (formerly of Prince's backing band, the Revolution) was unable to spark much energy from the band is debatable, but it is clear that the album suffers from a debilitating sameness. "El Dedo" is one of the few standout tracks, and it's clear that it simply reiterates the strengths of Maldita Vecindad without actually building on them. There is nothing truly unlistenable here, but there isn't much that's exceptional either, which makes Baile De Mas Caras a rather disappointing entry in an otherwise stellar career. ~ Victor W. Valdivia, Rovi

Baile de Máscaras, Los Hijos del Quinto Patio
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