Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Roberto Rodriguez

  • El Danzon de Moises [Tzadik, 2002] A-
  • Timba Talmud [Tzadik, 2009] **

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Consumer Guide Reviews:

El Danzon de Moises [Tzadik, 2002]
From the Prosthetic Cubans' percussionist comes--it's his roots--Jewish son: klezmer con salsa if not the unattainable pernil pastrami. Rodriguez doubles on trumpet, the indefatigable David Krakauer mans the clarinet, Matt Darriau plays both, Craig Taborn ripples the ivories, and what comes out is less wedding than chamber or dinner music. Because there's accordion, it often recalls another triumph of Latinized European cosmopolitanism, tango--as bent and elegant as Astor Piazzolla, and suppler. The last track is the wildest and most African and has the heartrending title "Jerusalem Market." Would it could be so. Would it could be so. A-

Timba Talmud [Tzadik, 2009]
Too much timba, not enough that other part ("El Sabor Del Shabat," "Oran Oran [Homage to Maurice 'Papi' El Medioni]"). **