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Pop Negro

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Album Review

If Pablo Diaz-Riexa’s second album under the name El Guincho doesn’t garner the same attention as the first (Alegranza) did when it arrived out of the blue two years previously, you can hardly blame him. Pop Negro is just as impressive as the debut was. It’s just that the indie landscape has shifted so much over that time span that someone blending all sorts of African, Latin, dance, and pop elements and influences into a whirling, glittery disco ball of sound isn’t exactly enough to stop the presses. In fact, since Diaz-Riexa doesn’t really break any new ground here, some may even dismiss the album as a retread. That would be a big mistake. While it’s true that the basic sonic template of Pop Negro is much the same as Alegranza, this time the songs are more focused and the overall feel is much punchier and direct. The songs seem less likely to spiral off in unpredictable directions; Diaz-Riexa keeps a steady hand on the wheel at all times. There are fewer voices and samples, less cluttered arrangements, and more straightforward rhythms on Pop Negro, making the songs easier to dance to but a little less likely to get lost in. This is much less an album for starry-eyed dreamers and more of a party record. Almost any song would be perfect for a forward-thinking dance party; the pounding drums, heavy bass, interlocking synth lines, and Diaz-Riexa’s yearning vocals combine in ways that would sound very good over a loud sound system in a club — or on headphones, as these are still intricately designed and executed songs despite the stripped-back approach. Though El Guincho may no longer take anyone by surprise, songs like "FM Tan Sexy" with its oddball R&B crossover appeal (a Timbaland remix seems natural) and the sunburst-bright "Bombay" prove that Diaz-Riexa is a master mixer of sounds and styles and Pop Negro is another stunning success for El Guincho.

Customer Reviews

Rythym Nation....

Great album...buy each song individually and get it for $8.91....

amazing

while listening to kcrw morning becomes eclectic ... i heard bombay.. the first song of the album. i cannot and have not stopped listening to it. the cars next to me turned down theit music to get some of this ear candy as well. please do yourself a favaor and get it and shake your booty in the car. amazing and happy music!

Crazy rhythms are oozing out of this album.

This album has great rhythms that are infectious in any dance floor. El Guincho's style is reminiscent of latino music. What makes El Guincho stand apart from his latino peers, is that he uses samples. The songs are unqiue but it's weakness is that the music can get repetitive (Only if you don't understand El Guincho's spanish lyrics). This is an artist that you need to look out for. I can only imagine his next project to only get better.

Biography

Born: November 17, 1983 in Canary Islands, Spain

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Born Pablo Díaz-Reixa in the Canary Islands, the Spanish-owned archipelago off the coast of Northwestern Africa, El Guincho found indie blog fame in early 2008, shortly after the previous December's release of his album Alegranza, which coincided nicely with his North American debut performance in Austin, Texas, at the SXSW festival. At age 14, Díaz-Reixa left his home for Continental Europe to focus on a career in sports, but when that didn't work out, he moved to Barcelona, where he played drums...
Full Bio
Pop Negro, El Guincho
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