ARTIST - SONIDO
CD -CAMINO DE LOS SUENOS
Genre: Flamenco, Jazz, Smooth Jazz, Worldly
Sounds Like: Camaron de le Isla, Tomatito, Vincents Amigo, Paco Pena
The Good: Songwriting, Diversity, Consistency
The Bad: Nothing to report
The Ugly: Nothing to report
The Band:5 out of 5
The Music:4 out of 5
The Songs:4 out of 5
The Vibe: 4 out of 5
The Production: 5 out of 5
The Verdict: 4 out of 5
The ReviewMulti-Talented Composer / Pianist / Producer Arie Salma and American Guitar- Virtuoso Rob Math formed Sonido on January 2012, giving birth to a fantastic musical journey which takes you through an exhilarating multi-cultural experience. The music of Sonido is mostly categorized as worldly flamenco, but is also equal parts fascinating, engaging, challenging, and altogether passionate. Core muskiness Math/Salma has created a sublime soundscape which is peppered with infectious Spanish flavors, amazing sounding guitar riffs, and finely sliced up melodies that create an impeccable mixture of music. Music that is invigorating to the mind, body and soul. If anything, it captures the sheer impassioned Spanish vibe that runs through these tracks like it runs through the veins of these musicians. All of this creates a musical environment so compelling and oh so listenable, compatible with virtually any listener. In many ways there are parts of the tracks that feel inspired by Smooth Jazz and World music in general, but make no mistakes this a World Class Flamenco band. I say smooth Jazz because most notably in the way that the same pieces use more melodic straight forward movements –more compatible to a mass audience no doubt. Some of this might be categorized as dumbed down Flamenco but it’s impressive nonetheless. I might add much of it is not dumbed down. Math/Salma are not stupid – they are presenting the world their music in the most marketable light. Here we see the best of both worlds – Sooth Jazz for marketability and radio exposure, and Flamenco for all the rest of the spoils. This lets the music go round and round, recognizing that just because we might be hearing similar music on the Smooth Jazz dial, we might not necessarily be hearing it in the same manner as the rest of the format on the station in question. From the time it takes off with “My Star” to the time Camino De Los Suenos finds itself drawing to its close with “Black Sea” it feels as though it might not leave your soul after the music has stopped. Much like a brilliant sunset, but eventually it does indeed begin to fade out, leaving an indescribable feeling of joy, positive residue of the music has been left behind. Camino De Los Suenos is an album full of hope. The sound shines with cautious optimism about the future. Fretwork is in earnest. Math is an impressive guitarist and Salma an impressive Pianist. At times the songs embody the joy of grit like on “Blue Warrior” with its gifted sensibilities. Percussion are prominently displayed throughout the album helping to emphasize the Worldly nature of the work. The many different styles and textures on the album are utilized in the best possible fashion. Music reminds me of Camaron de le Isla, Tomatito, Vincents Amigo and Paco Pena.
Musicians: Arie Salma: Piano, Keyboards, Rhythm Guitar, Add. Bass, Djembe, Add. Percussion, Rob Math: Lead Nylon String Guitar, John Ferraro: Drums, Hussain Jifri: Bass Guitar, Michael Dubin: Timbales, Congas, Bongos, Add Percussion, Alex Acuna: Congas Ronen Gordon: Drums, Lilo Fadida: Rhythm Guitar, Mel Steinberg: Flute, Michael Fortunato: Trumpet.
The Bad: The band is spreading themselves to thin within both genera's. Perhaps make one album strictly dedicated to Flamenco and another within the Smooth Jazz realm. This 2 pronged approach feels like Sonido is trying to be all things to all listeners for the sake of marketability and mass exposure.
The Ugly: Nothing to report.
The Bottom Line: Nowhere is this enthusiasm for life more evident than in pieces “My Star”, “Sapphire” the title track and “Bonita.” These marquee tracks are playful both melodically and instrumentally. The opener “My Star” is one of the album’s main attractions. This energy continues on through pieces like “Green Salsa” And the epic closer “Black Sea” whose melodic narrative work wonders for the album. Camino De Los Suenos ends off with the grand sweep as the album finishes off on a high note. Every piece is strong. Camino De Los Suenos is an album about the power of hope and faith in life. A comfortable groove defines this band/album alongside with a clear nod to the power of confidence and faith in music, playing and the amazing Spanish culture. Need I say more?
Carl Butleredited by Markus Druery
Indieshark Music Critic