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World Music CD Reviews Greater Latin America


By Nils Jacobson
Published April 24, 2007

Amar O Morir
Universal Latino

Judging by these 11 songs, Inspector has settled comfortably into a user-friendly, party-oriented sound. The eight-piece Mexican ska band’s raw punk roots of a decade ago have faded a bit over time, replaced by affability and market accessibility. (The noisy bonus track, a self-proclaimed “stupid song” bemoaning the power of media and money, really sounds and feels like an ironic afterthought.) The rest of the music, with the exception of the slow title song, is uptempo third-wave ska with uncomplicated lyrics in Spanish or Spanglish. The band is tight and the arrangements have enough twists and turns to skirt predictability—especially when the horns pop in and out, riffing and/or complementing Javier Sánchez’s lead voice. Once you’ve got a few beers (or tequilas) in your system, you might just find yourself singing and bouncing along, which seems to be the whole point of this disc.