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iTunes Review

No one was better than Ray Barretto at incorporating torrential percussive designs into the context of romantic dance songs. The band on 1973’s Indestructible features, among other players, a four-man horn section, a flute, and a backing chorus—not to mention the soaring lead vocals of Tito Allen. Yet what stands out most is the rhythm section, led by Barretto’s congos. It's the cascading salsa songs—“El Hijo De Obatala,” “Llanto De Cocodrilo,” and “Indestructible”—that sweep listeners off their feet with cyclical waves of instrumentation, propelled from beneath by the squad of bongos, congas, and timbales. Allen’s caramel-tinted vocals are the seductive focal point of slower tunes like “El Diablo” and “Yo Tengo Un Amor,” but this is a band that gets its heart from the percussion section. Here the drumming is neither decoration nor simply the foundation on which the songs are based. It's the sweetness and the spice in every song, the surprise ingredient that pulls in listeners regardless of the tone or style of the melody.

Customer Reviews

Must Buy!!

A great album from the greatest era of salsa.


Born: April 29, 1929 in Brooklyn, NY

Genre: Música tropical

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

While Ray Barretto's congas have graced more recording sessions than virtually any other conguero of his time, he has also led some refreshingly progressive Latin jazz bands over the decades. His records often have a more tense, more adventurously eclectic edge than those of most conventional salsa groups, unafraid to use electronics and novel instrumental or structural combinations, driven hard by his rocksteady, endlessly flexible percussion work. This no doubt reflects Barretto's wide range of...
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Indestructible, Ray Barretto
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