As pseudo-realist dub/funk/Afrobeat/hip-hop/Latin ensembles go, it’s tough to beat Ocote Soul Sounds and Adrian Quesada . Okay, so they’re unique—but as a spin-off of two genre-bending bands, you’d expect nothing less. Ocote Soul Sounds is a pseudonym for Martín Perna, the founder and saxophonist of NYC’s Antibalas, the dozen-member group that fueled an Afrobeat revival, while Quesada is a founding member and guitarist for Austin’s ten-piece Grupo Fantasma, whose modernized cumbia-funk-salsa counts Prince among its admirers. Coconut Rock ( ESL) is the pair’s third collaboration, and this time they’ve added an array of guest vocalists to their psychedelic trance stew, among them Brazilian star Tita Lima and Antibalas’s Marcos Garcia. Perna and Quesada each play multiple instruments (it takes a seven-piece band to re-create their music live) and keep the grooves hypnotic, with chanting, reverb-drenched horns, percussion, and guitars. It’s a creative mix anchored by a persistent funky undercurrent. Freed from the restrictions of their large-group democracies, Perna and Quesada are clearly having a blast. So will you.
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