Nando Da Cruz


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Nando Da Cruz is one of Cape Verde's prime musicians and can always be counted on to produce albums that are consistently enjoyable. Soraia is no exception. It is filled with mostly solid dance music ranging from spunky Cape Verdean coladeira and funana, a breakneck-speed dance form, to cha cha. Da Cruz can seamlessly shift gears from one dance form to another and do it well. His voice is purely sensual and honey-tinged, as is the backing female chorus. The title cut, "Movimente," and "Miss-94" stand out as particularly strong tracks, as well as the very hot cha cha "Julia & Joana." In the best Cape Verdean tradition, Nando Da Cruz has an uncanny ability to change the direction of a song with tempo and key variations and thus affect that crescendo that culminates in a feast for the feet and soul. He takes aim at the feet and hips and usually hits the bull's eye. The accompanying musicians are giants in the Cape Verdean music scene. He employs only the best on his albums. There's no filler here -- it's an excellent effort all the way through and the swing factor is high. Recommended.