Os Diplomaticos - K÷munikand°
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Os Diplomaticos
BOA (www.boa-music.com)

cd cover This is what I call party music: put this on and you'll be swinging in your chair. Since this will lead to you getting up off your seat anyway, I propose you get on your feet, with ample space around you. It's the sort of air-guitar (air-accordion?) -inducing record that we've come to expect from the far edges of the wild Iberian Peninsula.

Os Diplomaticos throw the sort of party that Manu Chao does (the truly wonderful "Exiptano" uses the signature trumpet line from Mano Negra's "Indios de Barcelona" to pay tribute to the Dude himself) but their influences are quite different. There is a wonderful Espirito Latino that funks up the record in the most unlikely places, while the inclusion of Batuko Tabanka from Cabo Verde brings authenticity to this tribute to the music of the archipelago.

Manolo on vocals, accordion and sax, Toni on bass with new members Rˇmulo on more accordion and guitars, Guni on extra guitars and viola (!), lovely Lola de Ribeira on vocals, Galician pipes and percussion and Xabier on drums complete the more recent lineup. They are all members of the independent republic of "Muenga," a cultural heaven right out of the writings of ┴lvaro Cunqueiro, while other fellow citizens of theirs join in the punk fun (playing things like pipes, mandolin, saxophones, trumpets and trombones, strings). A heaven wouldn't be a heaven if it didn't include its own poet laureates and Manuel MarÝa, Lino Braxe and Manuel Rivas provide the recitative.

It is a story that is based upon certain principles: work against passivity, for global reconciliation and equality, against the treadmill of the nine-to-five hell, for humane treatment of the immigrants and poor, against drugs and the drug of nationalism (and its ugly sidekick, regionalism). You should definitely pay a visit to their website because it's the only place to find translations of the lyrics (in English, French, Castellano) and this is necessary to start making some sense of this wild beast of a record, to help them k÷munikate their message and establish a connection.

K÷munikand° is music for your body, mind and soul, delivered with verve and humor; the definitive ethnically-tinted rock upper of the year. - Nondas Kitsos

CD available from cdRoots

The band's web site: www.osdiplomaticos.com

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