The Bottom Line
- Lots of hard salsa with a pop feel and fused with hip hop and other urban forms
- Steaming version of “Toro Mata”
- Miss YaYa replacing Huey Dunbar
- 11 tracks of urban pop salsa, hip hop fusion
- Produced by Sergio George
- Released April, 2008 by La Calle Records
Guide Review - CD Review: DLG - Renacer
After nearly a decade, DLG (Dark Latin Groove) is back. The original group consisted of Huey Dunbar, Fragancia and James Da Barber; in 2000 Dunbar left the group in pursuit of a solo career and that seemed to be the end of a band that mixed pop salsa with reggae, hip hop and reggaeton rhythms, creating an irrepressible soundtrack to the 1990s urban Latin scene.
The producer behind the original DLG was that unstoppable innovator, Sergio George and, rallying to reform the group, George set out to find a lead vocalist to replace Dunbar. His pick was Miss YaYa (Yahaira Vargas). Daughter of bachata’s Sergio Vargas, Miss YaYa attained a measure of public notice after her participation in Gigantes del Manana, another of the many musical reality shows based on audience approval.
The album Renacer is the debut of the reborn band and it brings fans both good and bad news. The music of DLG is still driving and distinct; the album benefits from the services of Ness and rapper DJ Napoles. But Miss YaYa changes the sound of the group and while she gives the tunes her all – sometimes simply shouting out the lyrics – it’s tough not to feel nostalgic for Huey Dunbar.
Making comparisons is inevitable when you release an album where half the tracks are from previous DLG albums: “La Quiero A Morir”, “Volvere”, “Juliana”, etc. The album fares better with the new material and after a few rounds of listening to it, the comparisons stop and the album seems to gets better and better. The back-up instrumentals really steam and there’s more hard driving tunes than the type of ballads that were perfect for Dunbar’s romantic tenor voice.
Hey, there's nothing wrong with that!