Pop Negro - El Guincho
Metascore
74

Generally favorable reviews - based on 13 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 13
  2. Negative: 0 out of 13
  1. Pop Negro is just as impressive as the debut was. It's just that the indie landscape has shifted so much over that time span that someone blending all sorts of African, Latin, dance, and pop elements and influences into a whirling, glittery disco ball of sound isn't exactly enough to stop the presses.
  2. It's when the ceaseless forward momentum of old hijacks Pop Negro's new structural nous that the most rewarding moments arrive here, the aforementioned Soca Del Eclipse, Ghetto Facil and Muerte Midi highlights of an album that's among the year's best, and that, while immediately enchanting, will take years to unravel.
  3. Jan 11, 2011
    80
    El Guincho dons his best Animal Collective costume on his third full-length, an album filled with Afrobeat and tropical rhythms. Yet it doesn't sound derivative in the least.
  4. There's a strong undercurrent of entrancing, psychedlic-pop to enjoy if you're prepared to listen hard enough. But if you're not into that sort of thing, if you're all about the tunes and the beats, it's still worth a go--I doubt it'll set your world on fire, though.
  5. Much of the experimentation is on the surface, and there does not seem to be a great deal of further depth or sophistication. Often, it is all too bright and too relentlessly ecstatic to feel truly meaningful or substantial.
  6. Combining afrobeat, dub and more samba slickness than you can shake a headdress at, the frenzied carnival rhythms of Pop Negro will spark a fire in your newly tropical soul that will still be smoldering come next year's Mardi Gras.
  7. It is broad in its appeal, yes, but it is miles deep in its longevity.
  8. Pop Negro feels transitional. El Guincho has a clear abundance of talent; he simply didn't harness it this time around.
  9. Oct 25, 2010
    80
    Most of the time, though, the convulsive beats are enough to shake you from your slumber and move you from your present position, slouched in a computer chair, to reinstate you with some much-needed kinetic drive. God bless any album that can do that, let alone that does it consistently and with so much complexity as this one.
  10. He'll probably still be relegated to afternoon festival slots and in hard to find reaches of your local record store, but Pop Negro is another delightful record that pushes the boundaries between music and countries.
  11. 60
    Though the title hints at darker turns, the album never steps out of the glare.
  12. The high points of Pop Negro are where Diaz-Reixa is at his most celebratory and unrestrained and moments like the vocal hooks in "Ghetto Facil" and the stop-start pounding of "FM Tan Sexy" prove it. Unfortunately, the exuberance that bursts out of the clutter of his best songs is a characteristic seen too rarely here.
  13. Oct 26, 2010
    60
    It feels like an artist distancing himself from his direct influences. [Fall 2010, p.67]
User Score
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No user score yet- Awaiting 2 more ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 1 out of 1
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 1
  3. Negative: 0 out of 1
  1. May 5, 2012
    9
    Excellent, underrated album that's gotten better since its release. El Guincho melds legitimate caribbean chops with avant-garde song writing and creates a uniquely hypnotic sound. The repetition that defines his sample-heavy sound flourishes when expected to support a beat instead of lead a song. Spanish speakers will also enjoy El Guincho's uniquely absurd imagery and reasoning. Don't miss out on lead single Bombay's absolutely excellent music video as well. Full Review »