Riverboat/World Music Network
Glen Sharp’s guitar is the first thing you notice driving this music – this marriage between British musicians and Spain’s history with the flamenco form. There are Spanish musicians involved in Calaita too and the second thing you’ll notice – the ingredient so crucial – is Chico Pere’s voice. The yearning across Entre El Tardon Y Triana is almost heart breaking, Sharp and Pere take turns taking the lead. For Un Mensajito it’s the guitar that’s in charge, a lovely groove forming beneath Sharp’s finger, the band in support with jazz sax playing mariachi horn. Diana Castro’s supporting vocals add a crucial flavour too, encouraging the ‘dance’ within each tune.
It’s an album without a dud note, ten compositions that offer various shades – be warned there’s some “jazz flute” on Tu Mirada Flamenca, but it’s a subtle affair, possibly rescuing the instrument and that term from Burgundy-purgatory. En El Puente features Sharp and Pere in their best locking of horns, the weave of guitar lines around the wail of the voice, each telling their own version of the story. At times like this the music is hypnotic, perfect. And though there are times – as on the following Si Tu Me Cantas La Cana – where it’s a little staid, a bit lightweight, it’s still engaging. And at worst, lovely. That ain’t a bad place to be.