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CD Review: Orishas - Antidiotico

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CD Review: Orishas - Antidiotico

Orishas - Antidiotico

Courtesy EMI

The Bottom Line

The Cuban-born trio Orishas are already multi-award winners in their adopted Europe. Their music is a fusion of traditional Cuban music, hip hop, funk and socially conscious lyrics. Antidiotico is a compilation CD of the best of their past 3 albums. The music is exciting, fresh and addictive - a must have.

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Pros

  • Afro-Cuban rhythms fused with hip hop/rap that create a fresh, new sound
  • Videos with images of Havana that will stay with you
  • Duet with legendary Beny More singing "Soy Guajiro"

Cons

  • -None-

Description

  • 15 tracks of Cuban traditional genre/hip hop fusion
  • Comes in single disc or CD/DVD combo
  • Compilation album of "best of" Orisha's previous albums
  • Guest artists: Trinidadian Heather Headley and Miami's Pitbull.
  • Released by EMI

Guide Review - CD Review: Orishas - Antidiotico

There's a reason you don't hear much about Cuban hip hop. Cuba, a country that regards its music as a natural resource, did not acknowledge hip hop as part of Cuban culture until 1999.

The Orishas Roldan Gonzalez, Hiram Riveri "Ruzzo" and Yotuel Romero were born in Havana but met in Paris. Ruzzo and Yotuel were there as part of a school exchange program and eventually started rapping in an early Cuban hip hop group, Amenaza. Roldan sang traditional Cuban music with group Rico Son.

They formed Orishas in 1999 and by 2000 had released their first album A Lo Cubano. Emigrante followed in 2002, El Kilo in 2005. Antidiotico is a compilation CD of the best from their previous albums.

The music of Orishas melds a large range of Cuban rhythms with strong, staccato rap. Then they add sweet vocal harmonies and socially conscious lyrics without the emphasis on violence and misogyny. The result is exciting, irrepressible, uplifting Cuban hip hop that is a breath of fresh air after a few years of repetitious reggaeton.

Among the standouts on the album are "537 Cuba", a hip hop version of Buena Vista Cocial Club's "Chan Chan", the hip hop/guajira "Represent, Cuba" with guest Heather Headley which was written for Dirty Dancing, Havana Nights (and was probably the best thing about that movie) and the controversial "Emigrantes". But really, every song on the album is a standout in its own way.

Antidiotico comes in both a standard single CD version and a special edition that includes a second CD and DVD. The standard version has 10 songs from their previous albums plus three new tracks; the special edition DVD contains 8 innovative videos and lots of scenes of Havana - worth it just for the images of Cuba.

Whether you're a hip hop fan or a Cuban music fan, you're going to love Antidiotico.

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