Yomo Toro

Las Manos de Oro

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    5
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An album from Yomo Toro, a mainstay of the New York-based Puerto Rican music scene. The cuatro playing here is impeccable, occasionally straying from the basic Latin grooves into a bit of classical-esque sounds. The strong vocals of Dalia Silva sometimes overpower the instrumental playing on the album, and it is that instrumental playing that is really the highlight. Also, a stray synth wanders into the recordings in a couple spots, which hurts a bit. When the arrangements are laid out without the vocals, and the instrumentation is purely acoustic, the album is superb. When those other factors return, however, it starts to lose some of its allure. For a spurt of pure enjoyment, catch "Invitacion Patria" in the middle of the album, sporting Nestor Rentas on lead vocals.

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