Gotan Project Lunatico Review

Album. Released 2006.  

BBC Review

The originators continue to be the masters.

Chris Moss 2003

It's now seven years since Franco-Suizo-Argentine trio Gotan Project stirred up both the world music and club scenes with its edgy, knowing electronica based on the tango and its livelier sister-rhythm, milonga. Since the release of La Revancha del Tango (2001) there has been a boom in this new fusion, with tech-friendly artists sampling and remixing everything from Astor Piazzolla standards to scratchy 1930s ballads.

Too smart to screw up the "difficult second album", the Paris-based pioneers have renewed their approach, widening their musical palate to include spacey piano and steel guitar, 1970s disco beats and a mock cabaret sound redolent of the Bad Seeds. Jangling guitars are provided by guests Calexico, there'sgravelly rap from Afro-tango maestro Juan Carlos Cáceres and Cristina Villalonga is still doing her Dietrich thing with the words.

Generally lighter in mood than the debut, Lunático, named after a horse owned by tango legend Carlos Gardel, is also wittier and more confident. Rich string arrangements and a more tightly managed acoustic sound add depth and emotion. The competitive tango danced between the machines and the musical instruments is as wonderful as the real thing. Four years without a new release was a long time, but the months have been wisely used, and this album feels altogether more adult. The originators continue to be the masters.

Creative Commons Licence This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Licence. If you choose to use this review on your site please link back to this page.