El Guincho, 'Pop Negro' (XL)

6
Pop Negro
Critical Mass
Label: XL

by SPIN Staff

While autumnal light now means shorter days, inside the music of Spanish producer Pablo Díaz-Reixa, there's always plenty of Vitamin D. The follow-up to 2008's sampledelic breakout Alegranza, Pop Negro repeats the same formula of exuberant, brightly patchwork pop. Díaz-Reixa remains unconcerned with world-music borders: Opener "Bombay" utilizes Caribbean steel drums rather than Bollywood tropes, while "Ghetto Facil" recasts Panda Bear for favelas (or carousels). The sugary stop-and-start of "FM Tan Sexy" charms, but too often the beats are exhaustingly static. Though the title hints at darker turns, the album never steps out of the glare.

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