Review By Aguzate.org
The image of a salsa machine that elevates its listeners out of the atmosphere and propels them into ecstatic rhythmic bliss is used repeatedly in the lexicon of salsa, but in recent years there is perhaps no band more befitting of this comparison than Bio Ritmo. In their latest album, Bionico, Bio Ritmo has Â¨rebuiltÂ¨ the vintage salsa sound, enhanced with ambitious, Â¨bionic,Â¨ and flawlessly-woven electronic treats that leap out, bursting through our familiar expectations of the genre, and opening new portals of possibilities.
Their music is rooted in the Latin explosions and experimentation of the 60Â´s and 70Â´s (they do a wonderful cover of Bobby ValentinÂ´s guaracha Â¨SeguirÃ¡s CriticandoÂ¨ from his 1965 first ever album Ritmo PaÂ´ GozaÂ´ El Mensajero), yet it constantly reminds us that this, what we are hearing, is something different, something new and refreshing. In this sense it is pleasantly reminiscent of Willie ColonÂ´s early work (and early salsa in general), wherein bold experimentation with an array of Caribbean, Latin American, and U.S. rhythms shaped a new sound that reflected the diversity and struggles of the time. Likewise, Bio Ritmo serve a smorgasbord of boogaloo (Â¨Bionic Boogaloo), plena (Â¨Dime VidaÂ¨), cha-cha (Â¨A La ChaÂ¨), guaracha, descarga, son, samba, cumbia, oriza, 6/8, disco/funk, and other rhythms true to the inclusiveness and malleability of salsa.
And like those early salsa bands, Bio Ritmo developed its own, instantly recognizable identity thanks to well-seasoned musicians who have been molding their sound and timing together for quite some time, and polishing it to a pearl-shine in electrifying live performances. In addition, Bio Ritmo pens original, thought-provoking, and humorous compositions. It also does not shy away from ambitious, take-no-prisoners arrangements, which give the songs plenty of fluid movement from section to section, surprising the listener at every turn. The tracks progress and build beautifully to the satisfaction of listening connoisseurs and the most demanding dancers. The album is superb from beginning to end, with aggressive moÃ±as, heavy percussion, and experimental piano.
It is imperative to mention the groupÂ´s collaboration with Jon Fausty, Grammy-winning sound engineer and one of the most important architects of the salsa boom. Taking care of the mixing on Bionico, he has created a listening experience with the highest degree of quality, and hard enough for salsa gorda fans, as is to be expected from this Fania veteran.
Bionico is original, forward-looking, experimental, and visionary. A true salsa machine that would make the Six Million Dollar Man and the Bionic Woman dance their way into outer space.