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World Music CD Reviews Greater Latin America

KCRW: SOUNDS ECLECTICO

By Meredith Deliso
Published October 28, 2005

Nacional NCL 63902-2

L.A.-based radio station KCRW has been churning out CDs of live performances from their studio for years, offering a mash-up of contemporary sound on one disc. Their first Latin-themed live collection, Sounds Eclectico, draws from some of Latin alternative’s best and most popular acts. Mexico City has long been a hotbed for Latin rock, so it’s no surprise that the majority of the CD’s bands and singers hail from there. Produced by KCRW’s Morning Becomes Eclectic host and station music director Nic Harcourt, the disc features 16 of the most critically-acclaimed Latin rock artists, from up-and-comers to those who paved the way. “Eclectico” does well to describe the CD, which offers a diversity of sound in rare, live form, from Los Lobos’ more traditional sound to KCRW favorite Ozomalti’s unique blend of hip hop and funk-infused salsa to Thievery Corporation’s smooth lounge feel. Standouts on the CD include Los Amigos Invisibles, who give a thoroughly enjoyable rendition of “Gorditas De Mario,” and the Latino-funk fusion from Kinky gives a hint at what their manic live show is like. If in the mood for a less exhilarating experience, Juana Molina and Jorge Drexler bring it down a notch with their simple yet moving pieces. The disc also features performances by acclaimed singer Julieta Venegas and rock en espanol pioneer Café Tacuba.