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Azucar y Candela featured review: RICARDO LEMVO y MAKINA LOCA

Angolan singer Ricardo Lemvo, born in The Congo and based in L.A., celebrates his 20-year recording career, NOT with a "best of" compilation, but with ALL NEW recordings of favorite tunes spanning five albums. Confidently expanding on hits like "Mambo Yo Yo" and "Yiri Yiri Bon," and including two never-heard bonus tracks, Retrospectiva was well worth the effort. READ MORE>>>>

Lemvo's trademark pastiche, a deeply multi-cultural mix of African and Latin American grooves, has never felt, or sounded, better. The remakes are built out and rearranged in ways that enhance all of Lemvo's rootsy appeal, without sounding like cookie cutter studio productions. Cuban pianist, flutist and arranger "El Niño" Jesus Alejandro Perez is heavy and smokin' like an old lady's puro, and both of Lemvo's fabulous soukous guitarists, "Huit Kilos" Nseka and Bopol Mansiamina, are in force throughout. Admittedly, I'm a salsa fan, but the sexy, slow-creeping African dance grooves are some of my favorite tracks here. Retrospectiva will make you fall in love with Ricardo Lemvo all over again.