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World Music CD Reviews Greater Latin America

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Grupo Los Santos
Lo Que Somos Lo Que Sa
Deep Tone
By Paula E. Kirman

Published June 6, 2008

Cuban music is about style and rhythm, and Grupo Los Santos displays both of these qualities in abundance. A jazz quartet hailing from New York City, each member’s experience and training helps the band create an authentic sound that brims with Latin-flavored grooves. The group’s second album—and the second as well for the indie Deep Tone label—moves quickly through a dynamic sea of Afro-Cuban rhythms and Brazilian styles, with each track recalling the atmospherics of a Latin club or concert hall with equal fortitude. The musicians focus less on traditional instrumentation and arrangements (eschewing piano altogether), and instead push their musical skills on percussion, saxophone, bass, and guitars to build a contemporary sound while respecting the music’s roots. Call it jazz or call it world fusion—Grupo Los Santos is adept at whatever else it could be.

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