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World Music CD Reviews Greater Latin America

GOTAN PROJECT

By MARIE ELSIE ST. LÉGER
Published April 19, 2006

La Revancha Del Tango
XL Recordings

On La Revancha del Tango, Gotan Project spins a beat-driven electronica version of Argentina’s red-hot dance, extinguishing neither passion nor rhythm. Gotan—a slang remix of the word tango courtesy of underground Buenos Aires—comprises three fixtures of the Paris club scene: keyboardist Philippe Cohen Solal, bassist Christophe Mueller and guitarist Eduardo Makaroff. The trio expanded to include two veteran tango musicians, pianist Gustavo Beytelmann and bandoneon player Avelino “Nini” Flores (living in France since the brutal military Argentinean dictatorships of the 1970s), as well as violinist Line Kruse and vocalist Cristina Vilallonga. Recording the ensemble’s jam sessions live in the studio, the trio later added dub and electro-beat touches. The result is a wholly engaging debut, a swinging collection sounding decades old and born-yesterday fresh. The album is finally being released in America alongside four club-ready remixes. Highlights include “Triptico,” the jazz-house tango track that shot the Gotan Project to the top of the European charts in 2000, and “Una Música Brutal,” sung with relish by Vilallonga. “Esta tango es para vos,” she sings on “Brutal.” This tango is for you.