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SANTANA Ultimate Santana Sony BMG (2007)


Another Santana compilation I here you say? Another cash-in? It must be Christmas? Well it could be all of those. Santana has been well served by compilations as you'd expect in a career spanning forty plus years but 'Ultimate' does bring the story up to date.

This time we get a selection of the man's duets (a feature of his work since 1999's 'Supernatural') and there are some new tracks.

Santana has always been somewhat eclectic in these liaisons and duets with Jennifer Lopez and The Product G&B veer away from the classic rock sound.

The lead single 'Into The Night', with Nickelback's Chad Kroeger, is predictably radio-friendly, but the singer goes well with Santana's straight-ahead guitar and there's a great retro wah section too.

We also get a new duet with Tina Turner, a reworking of 'Game Of Love' (which also appears in its original form with Michelle Branch on vocals). The one other 'new' track, the soul-flavoured 'Interplanetary Party', is like a slower 'Boogie Wonderland' in places - and frankly a bit naff. It pales somewhat next to the stronger material featured here.

Throw into this mix some of the classic Santana set-pieces (Black Magic Woman, Samba Pa Ti, Evil Ways and Oye Como Va) and what you have is a further contribution to the moustachioed one's pension fund, and not a bad career summary.


Review by David Randall

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***** 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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