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Album Review

When most Americans think of continental European popular music, they envision tepid Euro-pop, synth-heavy, slick, and wimpy. Their opinion might change after a listen to Canciones, the worldwide debut from the Spanish group Duncan Dhu. Spanish they may be, from the Basque region of San Sebastian, but they have obviously listened to plenty of American roots music. There are elements of blues and lounge jazz mixed in with very Iberian strummed guitars and sultry, '50s rock-influenced vocals. The result is a rare and compelling fusion of American and Spanish influences, of a cross between flamenco and rockabilly that moves Memphis a lot closer to Madrid. The quality of this collection of acoustic-driven songs is extraordinary, and this is a great introduction to the band. Note that Canciones is a collection of material from Duncan Dhu's first three albums, which were released only in Spain. Since this album was released, some of those albums have become available on CD in Europe, but this release is still recommended.


Formed: 1984

Genre: Latino

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '00s

Pop-meets-rockabilly group Duncan Dhu were formed in San Sebastian in 1984 by musicians Mikel Erentxun, Diego Vasallo, and Juan Ramon Viles. The band's debut disc, Por Tierras Escocesas, hit the market hard, selling more than 175,000 copies. The record's hit single, "Cien Gaviotas," was named song of the year thanks to its strong radio presence. Duncan Dhu's sophomore release, El Grito del Tiempo, met and exceeded the high sales expectations set by its predecessor, selling around 400,000 copies in...
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Canciónes, Duncan Dhu
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