Various Artists

KCRW Presents: Sounds Eclectico

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The performances on Sounds Eclectico are all live recordings related to KCRW, the Santa Monica public radio station that's a vital and varied musical resource for the curious, the fans, and the Hollywood music supervisors. Morning Becomes Eclectic host Nic Harcourt produces the set, and provides notes to each selection. As you might expect, Eclectico focuses on music from Latin artists. There are musicians and singers searching for inroads between genres, as well as those performing in a traditional style. For example, Argentinean Juana Molina sings in French for the quiet piano number "Insensible" (originally from her 2004 album, Tres Cosas), while Brazilian Girls give "Homme" a typically cross-cultural, cross-genre feel with more French vocals, hints of programming, and a cross between organic and electronic percussion. Mexico's Julieta Venegas contributes a version of her "Lo Que Pidas" that grooves like hip-hop, funk, and Latin pop meeting in the air over the backyard fence. There's the gently salacious Afro-Cuban lilt of "No Me Vayas a Enganar" by legendary Cuban vocalist (and Buena Vista Social Club veteran) Omara Portuondo, a frenetic acoustic version of "Sound System Municipal" from Mexican hip-hop/rock fusionists El Gran Silencio, and happily spacy pop from Venezuela's irresistible Los Amigos Invisibles. (They sound like Grandaddy covering Os Mutantes.) Sounds Eclectico doesn't have a bad track in the bunch, including other highlights from the ever-kinetic Kinky; the street-level L.A.-based hybridists Plastilina Mosh; and Colombia's Aterciopelados, who turn in a stripped-down version of the Pipa de la Paz selection "Baracunatana."

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