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World Music CD Reviews Greater Latin America

ATERCIOPELADOS

By MARTY LIPP
Published April 7, 2006

Evolución
BMG Latin

There’s plenty of dark, cynical music out there; fortunately Aterciopelados has little use for it. This Colombian duo started out in the early ’90s playing punked-up but tuneful music woven with Latin rhythms, but then took a turn toward a warmer electronic sound.

Fronted by Andrea Echeverri’s deep, lusty voice, Aterciopelados plays with a palpable celebratory spirit, no matter what the style. Even in a fist-pumping rock anthem like “No Necesito,” there’s the joy of fully realized expression, getting this pop tune just right. Evolución shows that Echeverri and Hector Buitrago can write smart, accessible music in any variety of styles, from Colombia and beyond. “La Estaca” alternates between ranchera and rock, “El Estuche” lopes in a hip-hop style interlaced with son; there’s even a Spanish-language version of Queen’s “Play The Game.” Although it’s a bit early for Aterciopelados to be putting out a greatest hits album, it is a great introduction to a group that will undoubtedly see many more hits.