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REGGAETON The Cuban Revolution
EMI Petrol 369 0932 (2006)

Now you might be wondering what place anything to do with raggae or Cuba has to do on these pages. Good question. Remember Miami Vice? Well there's a film version on current release starring Jamie Foxx and Colin Farrell as Stubbs and Crocket. So What?

Well, reggaeton is the scorching new style of world music recorded in the impoverished costal region of Santiago de Cuba. It's roots are in everything from rap to reggae to rock, and on offer here is a diverse collection of Cuba's internationally known reggaeton stars (Candyman, El Medico) and local heroes (Lady Ragga, Cosa Nostra).

The only real rock connection is the surprise inclusion of a reggaeton version of Marc Bolan's Children Of The Revolution. It's edgy, different and full of attitude - the perfect backdrop to a Michael Mann wide screen production. Elsewhere there's rap, reggae and a fusion of everything in between.

To be honest I expected this compliation to sound as good as elephant dung tastes (apologies but rap and reggae are not my cup of Darjeeling). But if black / world music is your bag, or if you're just one bad mutha fucka, then this could be worth exploring. It might also help if you had a basic handle on Hispanic.


Review by Pete Whalley

***** Out of this world | **** Pretty damn fine |
*** OK, approach with caution unless you are a fan |
** Instant bargain bin fodder | * Ugly. Just ugly

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