Caramelo Con Picante – Lazarito Valdés y Bamboleo
Bis Music compiled Caramelo Con Picante using
tracks from three of the label’s earlier Bamboleo albums. These are Mi Verdad, ¿Quien Manda? and Todo Lo Que Soy. Binding it all together, the title track is new. Admittedly, several better tracks were omitted but if these are the best of those albums, for me it’s a bit of a shame. The band that gave us Yo No Me Parezco A Nadie and Ya No Hace Falta now struggles to compile one engaging album out of three. All the same, pick carefully and you’ll find some very high class, hardcore jazz/funk Timba here.
There are several gems if you accept that sweet melody is not all that makes for a powerful song. Caramelo Con Picante, the track, is a tune, possibly the pick of the lot. Like another song of the period, sadly not included here- No Me Estreses, it settles into a funky groove and chugs along gathering flavour as it goes. The coro has a hook, quite an ear worm. Chichina is also a great track, with parched, arid harmony, fantastic keyboards and percussion and A Lo Cubano also rocks. Juan Pescao has potential but like several other tracks, it sounds like its played by a five piece band and a synthesised horn section. Fiebre, from Mi Verdad also has its moments. Clearly, Valdéz can still pull a tune out of the bag, I just wish he would do so more.
© 2018 TimbaMerchant
© 2015 Bis Music
*TimbaMerchant’s recommendations below*