And suddenly, unexpectedly, the Argentine band Calle Vapor surprises us with the release of a new album. It’s called Árbol De La Esperanza – Mantente Firme and is a real delight.
Don’t you know Calle Vapor? This talented group of musicians was formed in the city of Cordoba, Argentina, in 2006. They make Afro-Caribbean music. Since their beginnings, they have dedicated themselves to making interpretations of son, bolero, guaracha, cha-cha-cha, guajira and cumbia, mixing and creating fusions between the foundations of Afro-Caribbean music and other languages.
El Árbol De La Esperanza – Mantente Firme is the group’s 9th album.
The album opens with a harmonious flute that serves as an introduction to a version of Ojalá Que Llueva Café by one of the biggest music stars in the Dominican Republic, Juan Luis Guerra. We are immediately transported to the Calle Vapor universe. The sound is not aggressive, it is sweet, sweet and intimate. However, it carries a lot of energy and strength. It enters the listener, has an impact and makes us want to dance.
Then Yo Vengo A Ofrecer Mi Corazón appears. A delicious version for the original theme of the Argentine musician Fito Paez. Here the surprise comes with the beautiful voices of Soledad Cebalos and Andrea Hidalgo. The feminine touch gives another dimension to a song that speaks of love and hope. Nothing is lost, let us offer our hearts and walk together towards the future.
De Que Callada Manera is track number 3 on the disc. It is a musical adaptation of the poem Canción (1972) by the Cuban poet Nicolás Guillén performed by Pablo Milanés and published on his album Pablo Milanés Canta A Nicolás Guillén (1975). Later, the Puerto Rican orchestra La Sonora Ponceña performs a salsa version for this theme, including it on their 1987 album Back To Work. Again, Calle Vapor, adds his personality to this classic of music latin. The result is a refreshing song. We feel that we know it but the clothing given by Calle Vapor forces us to taste this new texture. It’s brilliant.
Dulcito e Coco is the song that follows. It is also a version of a song by a Dominican author, in this case, Vicente García. It is part of his album A La Mar (2016). The electric guitar gives it a touch of modernity in a rhythmic cadence that transports us to the cha cha cha. Again, reference for the excellent transverse flute solo by Diego Cortez and for all the sentimental charge that the band puts on their interpretations.
Imposibles, an original composition by the Uruguayan Fernando Cabrera, presents itself with a brilliant arrangement and full of sentimental charge. The timid beginning hides a lively and ample song that easily captivates our imagination. Diego Cortez’s flute touches us in a particular way. Personally, a few moments transport me to tickets for the American band Dave Matthews Band. Fantastic song.
In 2015, Colombian singer and songwriter Marta Gómez publishes Manos De Mujeres. This was always a song that Calle Vapor had in mind to interpret. During 2020 that opportunity arose and the idea was realized. Once again, the brightness of vocalists Soledad Cebalos and Andrea Hidalgo should be highlighted. Their interpretation carries the message of the song with intention. They give voice to the suffering and hardness of women’s lives. Excellent song.
Sé Feliz is an original composition by Descemer Bueno. It also gained notoriety with the voice of Anaís Abreu through the version included in the soundtrack of the film Habana Blues by Benito Zambrano. In the hands of Calle Vapor and through the voice of Emiliano Peirone, the song gains even more sweetness. It is a music that charges you with good energy and makes you want to live. Take a ride with the elegant rhythm of percussion and the beautiful choirs of Calle Vapor… and be happy!
Coincidence (or maybe not!) the following song, Ven Que Te Quiero Ver, is also an original song by a Dominican musician. In 2017, Alex Ferreira released the album Canapé where we found this beautiful love song. In the version of Calle Vapor we are pushed to celebrate love through a dance.
We get the feeling of a Jamaican perfume when listening to the guitar rhythm of Ojos Negros, an original composition by Kelvis Ochoa y Descemer Bueno. A song that celebrates the bonds that bind us.
The first song of this Árbol De La Esperanza was by Juan Luis Guerra and the last one is also: Amapola. Calle Vapor transports this song to their own world. They make her their own song! In this version Amapola is enriched with the clave code and percussion elements. The song invite us to a dance in a tight embrace.
Árbol De La Esperanza – Mantente Firme is an album full of soul and feeling. It is sweet, sincere and very human. It presents delicious and intelligent musical arrangements. Magnificent interpreters. The world of Calle Vapor is unique and music takes on new life in it. It’s a wonderful record.
- Ojalá Que Llueva Café
- Yo Vengo A Ofrecer Mi Corazón
- De Que Callada Manera
- Dulcito E Coco
- Manos De Mujeres
- Sé Feliz
- Ven Que Te Quiero Ver
- Ojos Negros
Musicians who participated in this disc:
Soledad Ceballos – Voice
Andrea Hidalgo – Voice
Emiliano Peirone – Voice
Fabricio Boretto – Ukele, Balafón, Tres Cubano, Guitars
Walter Solterman – Congas, Bongó, Peruvian Cajón, Batá Drums
Pablo Rodriguez – Bajo, Choirs
Diego Cortez – Transverse Flute, Bansuri, Ney, Quena, Colombian Harmonica
Esteban Lapasset – Piano, Synthesizer, MoogMartín Olsen – Bongó, Quinto
Guest artist: Joaquin Mercado – Electric Guitar, Choirs
Recorded at “La Metro” studios by Pablo Heredia and his team (2019) and recorded, mixed and mastered at “Estudio 34” by engineer Esteban Cavotti (2020).
Contact the band via email@example.com.
Congratulations Calle Vapor. Music with soul and heart. May you continue with the excellent work. ✌🏻