Another standout in Cadenza's recent salvo, Michel Cleis' "La Mezcla" keeps the fire burning in the South American wilderness. The tune unfolds in a cinematic expanse that crescendos in three parts. It begins by building a lush bed of percussive flora, including ominous rattlesnake shakers, then elegantly withdrawing in order to introduce a mindlessly hypnotic pan flute riff, under which the drums swell once more. Then in part three, yes, it's another stirring Latin folk-dance vocal, a female lead with some gentlemen on backup, painting the dream of some hot Saturday night in a decadent cabana, hidden deep in the forest. In full swing the tune's an impassioned burner, trippy and exciting, and over the course of twelve minutes it doesn't lose an ounce of steam, offering up more than one good lose-your-shit squall. The flipside dub is equally solid, showcasing dizzying drum layers, adding an extra rolling bass, gearshifting midway for a sudden flute loop burst.
If the soulful Latin folk vocal has lost a bit of its novelty in the past year, it's only because it's a good enough of an idea that it spawned a small legion of suit-followers. So much the better. Perhaps the one complaint here is that you can tell the vocal's a sample. One reason Stimming's "Una Pena" was such a face-melter last year was that the Violetta Parra vocal floated so beautifully unmolested atop the minimal house-groove, you could be forgiven for not noting it an appropriation. The singing on "La Mezcla" in contrast bears a bit of a time-stretch skidmark, baring some of its digital artifice. Largely a home-listening concern, to be sure, it's a quality most likely indiscernible when jammed late night on the main floor.