Nubes de Papel

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Spanish singer/songwriter Jairo Zavala turns in his second album under the group name Depedro with Nubes de Papel, recorded in the Tucson, AZ studio of the band Calexico, which performs on the disc. Zavala's gentle folk-rock tunes are given rich arrangements mixing folk and electric instruments, with melodic horn charts included, the result being full without getting cluttered. A good example is the instrumental "Tramuntana," which suggests soundtrack possibilities for the composer. Zavala sings a couple of songs -- "Empty Fields" and "What Goes On" -- in accented English, but otherwise sticks to Spanish, presenting his simple, poetic lyrics in a husky tenor. As his collaboration with Calexico suggests, Zavala's music has crossover possibilities beyond his native Spain, particularly in the Spanish-speaking countries of Latin America and the Spanish-speaking communities in the U.S.