Sitting here in the almost freakish Manchester sunshine of May 2012 this album by Italian born, Cuban resident Giovanni Imparato could’ve have arrived at a better time.
Sunshine sounds perfectly describes this collection of authentic Latin grooves, recorded in Havana by the percussionist/vocalist and local musicians. As you might expect, the album is heavy on percussion, but while ever present, they never overwhelm, riding high in the mix. Instead they are a wonderful addition to the dance-inducing rhythms here, which are fleshed out by piano, guitar, bass and on most songs, lively brass.
Some songs, such as the spaced out ‘No Vale La Pale’ hold a laid back, almost melancholic feel, but in the main this is an album that’s aimed squarely towards the dancefloor, though there’s no complaints from me lying back, in the sun, soaking up the seasonal flavours this album affords. The only slight criticism you could level at the album is that perhaps Giovanni is not quite as strong a vocalist as he is a percussion player, but that’s not to say that his voice does not hold a certain charm, particularly in his more softly spoken moments, in which he sounds not dissimilar to Manu Chao.