Various Si Para Usted

Only in Canada, you say? Pity! It seems altogether natural that one of the finest collections of Cuban funk should come out of this country. Crate diggers stateside have been prevented from doing any business with the storehouse of Cuban music since 1959: state-owned EGREM Records. Dan Zacks of CHSR Fredericton’s Waxing Deep radio show has seized this opportunity. Si Para Usted very impressively compiles the most fervent experimentalists on the island together with some one-off, leftfield recordings. The byword throughout is "revolutionary artistic freedom” and this collection doesn’t skimp on the virtuosic musicianship fuelling the analog synth-driven Cubano prog workouts. Irakere’s "Bacalao Con Pan” is one of the epochal statements of the period and has lost none of its power as a bata drum-powered break beat goldmine. The work of experimental trombonist Juan Pablo Torres is given much love, with three selections. His tremendous versatility and large body of work since the ’60s have often been overlooked. Even the decades old Orquestra Riverside get loose with "En Casa Del Trompo No Bailes.” These tracks remained obscure even though they were put out by the only game in town at their time of issue. For the most part, these tracks hardly conform to the central canon of Cuban pop, but this is still great music and is perhaps even more relevant to the funkier influences within the contemporary Cuban musical spectrum. (Waxing Deep)