Benjamin Escoriza: Alevanta! (Riverboat/Elite)

 |   |  <1 min read

Benjamin Escoriza: El Raton
Benjamin Escoriza: Alevanta! (Riverboat/Elite)

This may be a tough call for most, unless you have heard and loved Radio Tarifa, a rocking Spanish band that brought together a happy marriage of North African music, Spanish flamenco, Latin and gypsy rhythms, and plenty of pop smarts.

Their albums Rumba Argelina ('93) and Cruzando El Rio ('01) are well worth seeking out.

Escoriza was one of the voices and songwriters in that now disbanded group, and he possesses a sandpapery, impassioned and sometimes raw style which sounds like the result of a lifetime of inhaling cigar smoke and whisky.

While nominally working the same source material as Radio Tarifa, Escoriza takes a great leap into (mostly) more percussion-driven sounds which results in a high energy album that grabs you by the lapels and insists you move.

Producer Juan Albert Arteche however keeps the sound spacious thus allowing the core sound to be filled out with unexpected instrumentation and counterpoint melodies, or counter-rhythms.

It is an exceptional, too-short, collection and just to show he hasn't lost his heart-tearing capacity Escoriza closes with a one minute-long ballad that will have you reaching for a tissue.

Share It

Your Comments

post a comment

More from this section   World Music articles index

Te Vaka: Amataga/The Beginning (Border)

Te Vaka: Amataga/The Beginning (Border)

Now billed in small print as Opetaia's Te Vaka – after their leader, singer and songwriter Opetaia Foa'i – this expat pan-Pacific group with roots in Tuvalu, Samoa, Tokelau and the... > Read more

ETRAN FINATAWA INTERVIEWED (2006): From sands to stadiums

ETRAN FINATAWA INTERVIEWED (2006): From sands to stadiums

Etran Finatawa have band members from two nomadic groups from around Niger, and play music which sounds like the raw electric blues from Chicago in the Fifties and Sixties. Their electrifying music... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

Mulatu Astatke: Mulatu Steps Ahead (Strut)

Mulatu Astatke: Mulatu Steps Ahead (Strut)

This transplanted jazz musician from Ethiopia (vibes/keyboards) has been one of the major (re)discoveries of the past few years. His ascent continues on this album which drifts to life on the airy,... > Read more

Auckland City,  Where The Past is Present

Auckland City, Where The Past is Present

I just caught a glance at him out of the corner of my eye when I heard him shout “Why don’t you keep quiet”. Or words to that effect, with unprintable expletives included. He was... > Read more