By: Vince Lewis
After 25 years of playing together and steady touring, the Gipsy Kings offer up a superb mix of flamenco guitar on , Savor Flamenco. The group remains one of the top in their genre and includes: Nicholas Reyes [lead vocals and guitar], Tonnino Baliardo [lead guitar), Paul Reyes [guitar], Andre Reyes [guitar and vocals], Paco Baliardo [guitar] and Diego Baliardo [guitar].
The others on this CD are Rodolfo Pacheco-Jimenez [percussion], Bernard Paganotti [bass and upright bass and sequencing keys], Bertrand Lajudie [keys, sequences, synth and acoustic piano], Manu Borghi [acoustic piano] and Stephane Chausse [Flute].
All of the selections on the album were written by Tonnino Ballardo and Nicholas Reyes.
“Caramelo” starts off the party with a happy and upbeat traditional Spanish pop feel. The vocal harmonies are very nice, and you can feel the enthusiasm that this group shares when playing together.
“Bye Bye (Ella Me Dice Vay)” follows and has a solid melodic line with well executed guitar harmony lines and perfectly placed fills from time to time. “Como L’agua” features an opening section of full choral harmony followed by the soloist. Lightning quick guitar fills accent the softer minor tone of the song and add just the right amount of flash.
“Tiempo Del Sol” has more of a Brazilian vibe rhythmically. There is very catchy melody line percussively played on guitar, with solid percussion work that immediately grabs the attention of the listener. There is a nice flute solo on the Montuna section that rounds out the experience.
Other tunes on this album include “My Voy,” “Fairies Medley,” “Samba Samba,” “Corazon” and “Sueno.”
This collection is the first release from the group in seven years. This also marks the 25th anniversary of the most successful French musical group of all time. They have a tour through Europe planned that includes a performance at Royal Albert Hall in London on February 20th, 2014.
Any fan of Gypsy folk / pop music will find this CD to be a real treasure. Here’s hoping for many more years of music making for these folks.