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Tuesday Reviewsday: Residente and Dario Black

The Puerto Rican rapper known as Residente
The Puerto Rican rapper known as Residente

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Every week we keep you musically informed with the latest selections and reviews.

Today we hear from music journalist Justino Aguila.

Here are his picks

Artist:  Residente

Album: Residente

Many people know the artist Residente from the group Calle 13. Justino says this album, his first solo effort, is a departure for Puerto Rican rapper. He's transcended musically without compromising his unique take on music from simply strong writing, socially conscious offerings and an ability to connect with a worldwide audience.

With “Somos Anormales” (We’re Abnormal), he offers an electrifying, energetic and launching song for this visual album, which is literally based on his DNA. This is the concept and it seems to be working for many fans who appreciate this musical journey that has a global theme.

“Somos Anormales” features Siberian musicians from central Asia and was the first single for the album, which just went on sale. 

The song “Desencuentro,” about two lovers, features French actress SoKo and opens with a simple introduction of piano keys before Residente and SoKo take off, melting into each other’s back-and-fourth vocals in Spanish and French.

The song delivers a very point of view, a rich cadence anchored by piano, violins, guitars and the French horn, among other instruments. The song ends abruptly and that decision works beautifully in order to tell the story of the kind of love that can be grand, but imperfect at the same time.

Artist:  Dario Black

Album: Upcoming album, Temporary Love

Dario Black is an indie pop/electronica artist who’s been gaining momentum these last few years. He draws inspiration from artists such as Enrique Iglesias and Shakira.

The Colombian/Venezuelan singer is based here in Southern California and he’s currently working on a new album but has released “Don’t Let Go” recently and previously also released the Calvin Harris cover “How Deep Is Your Love.”

Dario auditioned on “American Idol” at earlier in his career and he didn’t make the cut, but Simon Cowell told him to keep working on the music, so Dario took his advice and has been working to find his voice in music and that development is clearly seen with this new music especially "Don't Let Go."

As an independent recording artist the struggle is real, but there are many Dario’s out there working everyday and it’s very encouraging to see Dario have this DIY approach, which is the way to go if you want to get your music heard. The days of a label picking an artist up like the old days is not the norm anymore (but it can still happen), but yes, artists like Dario are getting creative in the business sense, finding their way. "Don't Let Go" is gaining traction on Spotify and was recently featured as a Top 40 Dance Songs playlist, which I think is a turning point for Dario. Looking forward to more.

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