16 Songs, 57 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

For decades, the Gipsy Kings have been ambassadors in the name of flamenco, popularizing the genre around the globe while adapting their sound to the pop tastes of the moment. In 2004, the ambassadors came home to deliver Roots, an album that finds them embodying the arch romance and brooding sorrow of flamenco with renewed conviction. You can hear this blood-borne commitment in the wailing voices of Nicholas, Canut and Patchai Reyes and the dramatic guitar lines of Tonino Balladro throughout Roots. Highlights include “Bolerias” (torrid with deft guitar interplay), “Petite Noya” (a celebratory number with all voices joining in), “Como Siento Yo” (tender and seductive) and “Soledas” (captivating in its smoldering darkness). Nicholas Reyes’ singing on “Fandango” deserves special mention — the note of tragic longing it catches lingers long after the song is done. Despite their regal name, the Gipsy Kings are really the servants here — it’s the spirit of flamenco itself that guides this reaffirmation of their musical heritage. Recorded at a farmhouse in their native southern France, this album is a sparsely-produced, lovingly-rendered showcase for the familial group’s passionate skills.

EDITORS’ NOTES

For decades, the Gipsy Kings have been ambassadors in the name of flamenco, popularizing the genre around the globe while adapting their sound to the pop tastes of the moment. In 2004, the ambassadors came home to deliver Roots, an album that finds them embodying the arch romance and brooding sorrow of flamenco with renewed conviction. You can hear this blood-borne commitment in the wailing voices of Nicholas, Canut and Patchai Reyes and the dramatic guitar lines of Tonino Balladro throughout Roots. Highlights include “Bolerias” (torrid with deft guitar interplay), “Petite Noya” (a celebratory number with all voices joining in), “Como Siento Yo” (tender and seductive) and “Soledas” (captivating in its smoldering darkness). Nicholas Reyes’ singing on “Fandango” deserves special mention — the note of tragic longing it catches lingers long after the song is done. Despite their regal name, the Gipsy Kings are really the servants here — it’s the spirit of flamenco itself that guides this reaffirmation of their musical heritage. Recorded at a farmhouse in their native southern France, this album is a sparsely-produced, lovingly-rendered showcase for the familial group’s passionate skills.

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Ratings and Reviews

4.3 out of 5
40 Ratings

40 Ratings

Selena La´Chelle ,

Patience is a virtue, rewarded with love

Like the reviewers before me, I agree that this album did not fit my imagined understanding of what a Gipsy Kings album should sound like. I am not sure what I was expecting, but I think it was something whimsical and light; magically capable of teaching the untrained dancer the passion of flamenco through no more than listening to the hand clapping, the guitar, and the throaty lyrics I knew I would find within. However, what I instead received was a heavy, passionate, and modern flamenco, something my untrained ear took time to appreciate. At first I played only a couple songs-those which seemed to fit my preconceptions-eventually working up to the entire album. My patience and loyalty to Roots was greatly rewarded by my own love for it, and it has become the type of album I can enjoy whether I'm driving, relaxing, working, or sharing an evening with friends and family.

ELeonM ,

Pure, passionate -- authentic!

Funny, but I was not a Gipsy Kings fan. Saw this album featured on iTunes and thought I'd give it a try. At first the rough voices turned me off, but the more I listened I began to realize that what I was hearing was "unglossed" emotion...something that never makes it to final recordings. The guitar work here is just exceptional. Drumming and handclapping really grab you...I use this album to "kick start" me during a long afternoon of writing. After a year, it's like an old friend who serves you up a cup of old-country espresso and hand-rolled cigarette. Enjoy!

Ze_Pequeno ,

Great Album

The Gipsy Kings have released a great new album with many of their old sounds, and many new sounds as well. If you are very stuck in your ways and wish to hear the exact same sounds every time an artist releases an album, you may be disapointed. Defineately listen to Como Ayer, Como Siento Yo, and Hermanos.

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