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Top 10 World Music CDs

Manu Chao
February , 2008

By Ernest Barteldes

La Radiolina

Considering its recent release, it might be too soon to gauge the impact of La Radiolina on world pop culture moreover, this is a disc rife with sonic complexities and jarring new musical directions, which could be a bit too heavy for newbies to handle. But it’s still a brilliant piece of work, and a welcome change at a time when a growing number of artists are distancing themselves from rock as art. Chao’s approach to music is certainly not easy the Franco-Spanish musician challenges the listener with lyrics written in four languages, and with beats that reflect a completely open musical mind who expects no less from his listeners. From the laid-back “A Cosa” (with Malian guitarist Amadou Bagayoko) to the blunt-force “Politik Kills,” he also switches up moods and messages, like a spin through the dial of “a little radio station” that gives the album its name.