Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Afro-Latin from Austin - Brownout

Freestyle (www.freestylerecords.co.uk)

Austin, Texas, long a pace-setter, has more recently broadened its horizons to boast a growing contingent of Latino bands. Tapping its South Texas roots, Brownout serves up a sizzling, mostly instrumental repertoire heavy on guitar, sax, brass, and congas, recalling but never imitating precursors like Joe Bataan, Santana, Tower of Power, Dr. Loco's Rockin' Jalapeño Band, Los Lobos, Los Mocosos, and Grupo Fantasma (where some players do double duty). No wonder the Austin Chronicle named Brownout the city's "Best Live Act," nodding to a dance frenesí of boogaloo, soul funk, salsa, Afro-Latin, Afro-beat, and acid jazz sounds. To wit, "Con el Brownout no se juega" ("don't mess with Brownout") could be a latter-day reincarnation of Cal Tjader and Mongo Santamaria, while "Chafa Khan Artistry" constitutes a head-on collision between Willie Bobo, King Tubby, James Brown, and a sonic barrage of unidentified flying objects. Take cover! - Michael Stone

CD available from Amazon.com

Read more on RootsWorld

No comments: