Various Artists

The Rough Guide to Salsa Dance: Second Edition

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While the first (and highly popular) compilation of salsa dance in the Rough Guides line dealt largely with more traditional versions of the genre (with some give and take, of course), this second edition specifically makes an effort to include newer, more fusion-oriented salsas. The major bases are covered with contributions from New York, Cuba, and Colombia, but there are contributions from farther afield as well, with the West Coast represented well and fusions with Senegal and Mali courtesy of Africando's more salsa-oriented end. The Colombian salsas are particularly slick productions, and the Puerto Rican (and Nuyorican) influenced pieces of salsa dura are great examples of the mix of classic and modern. Regardless of the origin of these pieces though, every one of them is a tight performance. Excellent sound accompanies the newer recordings, and the mix of old salsa standards and new adventures in composition is refreshing. Perhaps a bit short and leaving some ground uncovered in the genre, but the album is an excellent starting point for someone looking into modern salsa.

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