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Este Mundo

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Adam Greenberg
After a breakthrough debut with Extraordinary Rendition, San Francisco's Rupa Marya and her band of musical misfits returned in 2009 with Este Mundo, an album formed in ways around a more singular cultural core. The musicality of the group is without question -- the players jump into formation at the drop of a hat, and can alternately swing together or clash as they devolve into a frenzy of excited improvisation. There are still the elements of Gypsy jazz, the elements of Indian classical music, and the Argentinean milongas and tango pieces that were present in their previous album. However, there's a stronger tie both thematically and musically with Mexico here. The ...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Adam Greenberg
After a breakthrough debut with Extraordinary Rendition, San Francisco's Rupa Marya and her band of musical misfits returned in 2009 with Este Mundo, an album formed in ways around a more singular cultural core. The musicality of the group is without question -- the players jump into formation at the drop of a hat, and can alternately swing together or clash as they devolve into a frenzy of excited improvisation. There are still the elements of Gypsy jazz, the elements of Indian classical music, and the Argentinean milongas and tango pieces that were present in their previous album. However, there's a stronger tie both thematically and musically with Mexico here. The lyrics, largely in Spanish, deal strongly with the displacement and danger inherent in border-crossing, and the music takes on a casual norteño sound with its reliance on the accordion and bass. Even the pieces with a theoretical Andalusian or Argentinean pattern end with a bit of a country feel thanks to some violin playing that verges on fiddle territory. The group makes a point of social statement within its music, and showcases cultural diversity whenever possible. At times, the ethnic portions can seem a bit ill-fitted and worse when a stray rapper is enlisted to juxtapose against more traditional fare, but the full album is a worthwhile one. Transitions from raga to klezmer to chanson are rarely so fluid. While the music's goals or directions may never be entirely understood, you can still enjoy the sound.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/27/2009
  • Label: Cumbancha
  • UPC: 890846001152
  • Catalog Number: 15
  • Sales rank: 123,110

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 (La Frontera) (1:46)
  2. 2 C'est Moi (4:10)
  3. 3 Por La Frontera (2:43)
  4. 4 La Linea (2:16)
  5. 5 La Rose (3:01)
  6. 6 Culpa De La Luna (3:07)
  7. 7 L'éléphant (4:41)
  8. 8 Soledad (3:18)
  9. 9 (El Camino Del Diablo (1:57)
  10. 10 Este Mundo (3:20)
  11. 11 Soy Payaso (5:43)
  12. 12 Neruda (3:14)
  13. 13 Trouble (4:14)
  14. 14 La Estrella Caida (2:47)
  15. 15 Espero La Luna (2:34)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Rupa & the April Fishes Primary Artist
Ralph Carney Baritone Saxophone, Soprano Saxophone, Guest Appearance
Boots Riley Rap, Guest Appearance
Ara Anderson Trumpet, Sousaphone, Pump Organ, Guest Appearance
Eliyahu Sills Bansuri, Guest Appearance
Safa Shokrai Electric Bass, Upright Bass
Isabel Douglass Accordion, Bandoneon
Jorge Molina Berimbau, Guest Appearance
Technical Credits
Pablo Neruda Composer
Oz Fritz Engineer
Boots Riley Composer, Lyricist
Rupa & the April Fishes Arranger
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 1 )
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  • Posted October 1, 2010

    "Este Mundo" is Powerful Medicine!

    Rupa & the April Fishes won critical acclaim and a global network of devoted fans with their exquisite debut CD, "eXtraOrdinary rendition." Their eagerly-awaited second release, "Este Mundo," seems destined to multiply both the accolades and the fan base exponentially. Multilingual singer/songwriter/physician/human rights activist Rupa Marya and her talented, inventive band have created a fabulously exuberant and eclectic collection exploring themes of love, longing and loneliness. Several of the songs confront the borders--geopolitical and metaphorical--that separate people from their loved ones and their dreams, and Rupa gives passionate voice to the migrants who risk life and limb to find a new life in a strange and inhospitable land.

    Other songs worthy of mention include "L'elephant" and "Trouble." In the former (inspired, I believe, by the writings of Indian philosopher Jiddu Krishnamurti) Rupa sings of an elephant walking through the jungle, innocently trampling the trees in its path, which enables the human following in that path to enjoy the moonlight that "only falls where the trees have already fallen." One hears the elephant's footsteps in the band's thunderous crescendo, as Ara Anderson's gorgeous trumpet solo soars above the din. "Trouble," a delightfully jazzy/bluesy number, showcases the artistry of Marcus Cohen on trumpet, Ed Baskerville on cello and Safa Shokrai on bass, as Rupa laments an apparent tug-of-war between head and heart: "trouble beautiful trouble/why don't you stay/i think that you should go."

    Backed by some of the finest musicians in the Bay Area, Rupa stirringly answers the Beatles' to "take a sad song and make it better." "Este Mundo" is powerful medicine from the good doctor.

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