Review: Y La Bamba, 'Ojos Del Sol' On the band's new album, Luz Elena Mendoza's voice is fully enmeshed in the arrangements, which gives her bicultural storytelling an almost otherworldly feel.
NPR logo Review: Y La Bamba, 'Ojos Del Sol'

Review

Review: Y La Bamba, 'Ojos Del Sol'

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Y La Bamba, Ojos Del Sol. Courtesy of the artist hide caption

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Courtesy of the artist

For the Portland, Ore., band Y La Bamba, creativity and talent have combined and crystalized to form a unique sound. That sound is the sum of many individual musical experiences and influences, but it also reflects a shared vision. Most importantly, on the new Ojos Del Sol, it sounds as if the group is having a blast playing music.

The biggest step forward on the new record lies in how Y La Bamba uses Luz Elena Mendoza's voice: It's employed like a musical instrument, as part of an ensemble sound. That may sound easy, but it's difficult to pull off. Singing delicately in her upper register, she seems enmeshed in the instrumental arrangements, which gives her bicultural storytelling an almost otherworldly feel.

Ojos Del Sol represents a major step forward for Y La Bamba, not least because it fully establishes Mendoza as one of the most innovative and exciting young vocalists around.

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Album
Ojos Del Sol
Artist
Y La Bamba
Label
Tender Loving Empire
Released
2016

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