Most of the couple dozen tracks from the 1930s on this disc were credited to Los Madrugadores, and those that weren't were done with musicians who played in the loosely configured band. The sound is quite good and clear considering the age of the original singles, and the harmonies (mostly male, although Josefina Caldera sings on one track) are the most attractive elements of a repertoire consisting either of traditional Mexican songs or contemporary compositions that were quite similar in tone to Mexican traditional songs. The guitar work is also pleasing, with Jesus Sanchez playing steel string arpeggios on the numbers in which he participates. The earliest recordings (from 1931) also have piano which, far from being a distraction, actually lends the collection some needed diversity. It's not as musically distinctive or as searingly emotional, however, as the best Mexican-American music of the time, such as that sung by Lydia Mendoza. The booklet offers bilingual lyrics to several of the songs, including the controversial "Corrido de Pedro J. Gonzalez," which details and protests the imprisonment of founding member Pedro J. Gonzalez on charges based on questionable testimony.
AllMusic Review by Richie Unterberger