Norteños de Ojinaga

Norteños a Morir

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AllMusic Review by J. Chandler

An overly thin and bright -- and just plain unbalanced in the case of "Un Loco Enamorado" -- mix mars this effort. On the other hand, it's great to see the sax player step out to write a ballad (the aforementioned track, a failed stab at what Conjunto Primavera would hit the big time with some years down the road). In general, this album has a good ratio of band originals to industry covers. Of particular interest is Hector Sanchez's "El Viejo." Musica Norteña, like every other kind of pop music, is always at its most interesting when talking about things other than generic romance, and to its artistic detriment, Norteños a Morir does contain its share of boring love poetry -- not that this would hurt the sales of this disc in any way. The Sanchez brothers' voices, devoid of gravel, are actually predisposed toward this kind of stuff, making even corridos like "Los Ojos de Chihuahua" seem lighter fare than they actually are. This is compensated by the rhythmic variety of the tracks. The Ojinagas add rock and ballad beats to the usual balance of polkas, waltzes, and cumbias (not that this is especially uncommon or original in this genre), making the disc a flowing, engaging listen from beginning to end -- as long as you're listening through an AM radio.

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