Caña Brava

Mas a Caballo Que Nunca

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Although critics tend to lump merengue and salsa in the same category, the two genres couldn't be more different. Of Dominican origin, the merengue is easier to dance, and instantly recognizable because of its sticky beat, outburst of saxophones, and pulsating basslines. A spirited, sensuous dance, merengue is best enjoyed in the setting of a concert performance, and Cana Brava is one of the best live merengue groups there is.

Because of the youthful charisma of its three lead singers, Cana Brava favors an aggressive, highly energetic merengue, marked by the trio's braggadocio-shouts that are declared while engaging in elaborate dancing routines. A perfect example of this take-no-hostages approach to rhythm can be heard on the opening "El Amor Nacio Asi." Although merengue tends to sound a bit repetitive after a few listens, Cana Brava's pianist and musical director Alberto "Ringo" Martinez adds variety to the menu with subtle variations, like the pop chorus of "Dulces Besos" and the predominant conga of "Me Corono."

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