Cuba Leap Of Faith

This is a hard album to describe, as it traverses many disparate scenes. The band is made up of Cuban-Canadian Christopher Andrews and Brit Ashley Bates, who take their love of thick beats and grooves and marry them to pop melodies and even a bit of soul. Guest vocals are handled by Angie Brown, Shara Nelson and label mate Rachel Goswell (Mohave 3) who softens things on “Winter Hill,” one of the album’s highlights. Guitars, samples, beats and even brass all flow effortlessly across this, their second official release. There is definitely a deeper logic to the album, and it passes the start-to-finish test with flying colours. Cuba produces the material themselves and have managed to attract praise from none other than the Chemical Brothers. The boys of Cuba talk a big game, but they manage to deliver the goods — a tall order for material better suited to a live environment. (4AD)