[pullquote quote="Took me 20 years till I finally found my flow. Now that it's mine I won't, I won't let go." credit="Rene Lopez, on 'I Flow'"]Every once in a while an artist comes along with a fresh new sound that can only be described as “of the moment.” Such is the case with E.L.S., short for “Electro Latin Soul,” which is both the title of the new album from [lastfm]Rene Lopez[/lastfm] and the best description of the sounds contained therein. Lopez, born in The Bronx to Puerto Rican parents, has condensed a lifetime of musical influences like salsa, boogaloo, and Latin soul into a rhythmic rock ‘n roll mezcla (mix) designed to get hips moving and feet tapping.
Rene Lopez “E.L.S.”
E.L.S. as an album is all about establishing Rene Lopez’s vision of the modern New York City sound. In an era marked by low-fi Brooklyn-rock and ever-more-obscure electronica, Lopez draws upon the successes of past movements, giving equal time to the big-band salsa and meringue grooves of his father’s generation and the punks and young hip hoppers of his 80′s New York. Some songs contain mini history lessons, as on “Puerto Ricans In America,” and lend context to Lopez’s musical message. Other tunes, like “Shing-A-Ling Is What I Bring,” set the listener up for what to expect from this electro-Latin-soul sound. And some songs exists just for the fun of it, like the hysterical “Johnny Wants To Be A Matador,” in which a young Johnny Murphy longs to trade his Brooklyn-Irish upbringing for the thrill of a matador’s life in Spain.
[pullquote quote="No need to feel rushed, just want to walk slow. I want to give thanks to every person I know." credit="- from 'Feeling Something Good'"]At least one track on E.L.S. seems destined for radio fame. “Feeling Something Good” has Diet Coke commercial written all over it, with its upbeat horns-driven melody and optimistic “sun-is-shining” lyrics. We picture Lopez dancing his way down a sunny Bronx street, swinging off the lampposts and kissing old ladies as they walk home with their groceries.
The full track listing for E.L.S. is:
2. I Flow
3. Johnny Wants to Be a Matador
4. Honey Got Some Love
5. Fa La La De Fa la
6. Puerto Ricans in America
7. L2 the Boogaloo
8. Feeling Something Good
9. Everything We Do
10. Shing-A-Ling Is What I Bring
Keep an eye on Rene’s tour page for upcoming shows.