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Luis Munoz: Vida

Javier AQ Ortiz By

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As adept as Luis Muñoz is at various percussion instruments, keyboards and piano included, the versatility and sensibility of his writing are also showcased on Vida. He braids various Latin American styles to form an attractive jazzy Bo Derek-like musical hairdo of sorts that travels well in various contexts. Whether it be as background music at home or work, as radio features, driving music, or even for partying with abandon, this compact disc has various delightful alternatives to please even the most exigent taste.

"Journey of Saint Augustine does convey a characteristic sense of movement, with an Argentinean nostalgic air well served by its instrumentation, which includes both accordion and harmonica, as well as acoustic guitar. This composition, however, does not rely on the sensuality rightly associated with tango—for that you could attend to "Between Birth and Dying. The emotive core of "Journey of Saint Augustine is, nonetheless, just as dramatic and "saintly as any tango-inspired piece. Simple, effective and pleasantly profound, which, expectedly, could subsume the rest of the music from this release.

"Myth and Resurrection is a vivid and tight Afro-Cuban 6/8 percussive buildup highlighted by engaging trumpet and reed riffs that anchor the ever-evolving gaseous mysterious elements, present in the reed soloing, and the atmospheric context, brought about by the use of synthesizers and a pedal steel guitar. "Mad Bop, where Muñoz solos on timbales, is a bebop Afro-Cuban guaguancó with smartly conceived bridges and changes, as well as brief but superb solos. Much the same can be said about "Palito.

A vocal version of "Pasión, which Muñoz had already rendered instrumentally, with lyrics from fellow Centro American poet Rómulo Castro, titivates this recording. Lead vocalist Téka Penteriche is just too much while interpreting its Brazilian mellowness.

Venezuelan joropo lies behind "Mercedes in reposo, which, once again on this recording—ethnicity of the attending genres notwithstanding—argues for the depth of simple beauty for its own musical sake. It would bring the house down if interpreted live in the Sabana Grande area or Caricuao quarter of Caracas!

Visit Luis Muñoz on the web.


Track Listing: 1. Mad Bop (L. Mu

Personnel: Accordion: Brian Mann (2,4,5). Acoustic guitar: Gilberto Gonz

Title: Vida | Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Pelín Music

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