Most of World Music Network’s compilations set out to enlighten as well as entertain but Think Global: Fiesta Latina is primarily about entertainment. Enlightenment has taken a back seat. This is a party album. Almost all of the songs have the cheap jellybean vivacity of merengue, even the ones that are actually bachata or salsa or Colombian hybrids. The singer leaps out at you, the trumpets blare, it’s as subtle as Lego. See those glaring primary colours in the cover photograph? That’s what it sounds like. It comes as a surprise when they decide to end with Frankely’s moody “Si No Saliera La Luna” when the whole tone of the album to that point has been lifting towards a big, flourishing finale. You can’t say that this partnership of World Music Network and Amnesty International is aiming at the lowest common denominator, exactly, because any foreign-language album targeted at English-speaking listeners risks alienating its potential audience, but with Fiesta Latina they can’t quite boast that they’re aiming for the highest common denominator either.
We all know how critical it is to keep independent voices alive and strong online. Please consider a donation to support our work as an independent publisher devoted to the arts and humanities. Your donation will help PopMatters stay viable through these changing and challenging times where advertising no longer covers our costs. We need your help to keep PopMatters publishing. Thank you.
// Sound Affects
"Natalie Hemby's Puxico is a standout debut from a songwriter who has been behind the scenes for over a decade.READ the article