Fireworks

Taifa - 'Embrujo' Hot

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Written by Central Electronic Brain     August 22, 2017    
 
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Musically a very interesting thing to sit and listen to.

Our Reviews Ed said "give this a go Ian", to which he sent me an album billed as powerful Rock music played in a Spanish Flamenco key and enhanced by Oriental/Arabic traditional instruments. Now this sounded like an intriguing amalgamation of styles and as the resident Mr Eclectic, I decided to give it a try.

This is the band's fourth release but the first with English vocals and here in lies a problem for me and I fear for the band. Singer Luis Massot can sing I'm not saying that he can't, but his accent is quite thick and heavy (which usually doesn't bother me) and this, at times, mars what they are trying to achieve. I think I'd have preferred the band to have continued singing in Spanish rather than trying to give English a go, or failing that, if they did insist on going down the English vocals route, finding a singer who didn't have such a strong accent to perform on the tracks.

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Yet, for all of my complaints, Taifa are all very good musicians and the intelligent way they combine the usual guitars, bass and drums with the Indian Sarangi, Arabian Oud, North African Darbuka, Iranian Tar and Spanish Flamenco guitar is musically a very interesting thing to sit and listen to. So if you do sometimes like to give something that is a little off your usual musical path a go, then I'd say 'Free To Dream', 'Tetouan', the more traditional Rock of 'Written On My Skin' and 'Caravan Of Live' are the places to start. It has to be said these are full of very strong musicianship and clever arrangements and these songs are probably the easiest to get into on this release.

'Embrujo' isn't a bad album at all and musically these guys are all skillful musicians. So I'm sorry to say that it's my personal dislike (maybe too strong a word) of the vocals that has probably stopped me from enjoying this album a little more. That said, if you're tempted please give it a go because you might like what your hearing and I'd hate to put a band down just because the vocals aren't for me. For the record, although Fireworks was supplied with only the English language edition, I have seen available online a version in their native Spanish and this may possibly be a better option to invest in.

Ian Johnson

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