Cooder sessions showcase Cuban music
Reviewed by ANDREW TSUI
Buena Vista Social Club - Buena Vista Social Club (World Circuit) These sessions, recorded in Havana in 1996, feature the inimitable Ry Cooder and the cream of Cuba's musical talent.
A sense of tradition and spontaneity permeates the album. Under Cooder's guidance, the musicians breathe new life into a collection of 14 outstanding songs, reflecting the full range of the island's rhythms and musical styles.
Recommended tracks include Pueblo Nuevo, Veinta Anos and El Cuarto De Tula. Remarkable.
Second Night - Kate St John (All Saint) The former lead singer of The Dream Academy stepped out on her own with a debut solo effort, Indescribable Night. After three years, she is back with Second Night, a package that defies easy categorisation.
St John uses an eclectic mix of musicians with jazz, folk and classical backgrounds. The album also features a duet with Boris Grebinshikov and his group Aquarium, for whom she has produced two albums.
A cinematic, imaginary and unashamedly romantic work.
This Could Be Heaven - Pandora (Universal) Swedish pop diva Pandora's fourth album marks a new departure in her musical career.
Produced by her long-time partners, Hit Vision and Metro, the set consists of 14 strong songs - three penned by Pandora herself. Tracks like the high-energy dance number Shout It Out and the ballad I'll Be There For You showcase Pandora's versatility and her unique new sound.