Sabor a Cafe - Adonis Puentes
Tumba King Records
Not all global music traditions need succumb to fusions in order to remain relevant. Salseros, Sambistas and Calypsonians continue to keep their craft fresh and contemporary. Adonis Puentes has chosen the path of the salsero after falling in love with Septeto Nacional de Cuba Ignacio Pinero as a boy in his native Cuba. The band was formed 80 years a go but still have the ability to charge Puentes' enthusiasm. "I grew up listening to their music," he explains. "I shared my song with them when they were in Victoria, BC. They liked it and we recorded it in Cuba." The role of salsero is one Adonis seems destined for; combining his fluid, soaring voice, the poetry of love in his heart, and his mastery of arrangement and composition. It all comes together on Sabor a Café, 12 original salsa selections that ring out clear and true through the static of convention. Puentes is a witty and positive lyricist, a fact that transcends the Spanish language; a joy for life any can sense and appreciate by listening to the songs. It's a craft he has been honing since he was a mere 14 years of age in tandem with his fraternal twin, Alexis a.k.a. Alex Cuba. Together, they performed and recorded as a duet in Vancouver years a go and it was my good fortune to present them on stage and on the air many times. So, it's no surprise that one of Sabor a Café's key tracks, 'Se Desata' which features the brothers in harmony once again finds a soft spot in my heart. One of the most stunning and contemporary moments comes early in the album. Track 2, 'En Cada Jomada’ has almost a pop/rock chord progression which adds interest attired in the brassy, percussive salsa arrangement. The acclaimed Ruben Blades raves, "The variety of the songs, excellent and original arrangements and the superlative quality of the musicians, produce a record that I consider one of the best I have listened to in sometime." High praise, but no doubt the first of much more to come to Adonis Puentes.