Gotan's first collection "La Revancha del Tango" was an irresistibly gut-grabbing, loin-twitching, bass-loping, dub-tango hybrid winner from the first listen, invariably prompting responses of "What it THIS? I LOVE it".
"Lunático" is a much less in-your-face proposition. I could barely wait to get it out of its packaging, but then I struggled to get into the music itself. Mostly less meaty than "La Revancha" and more varied - tricksier, even. It took some chance random plays on the iPod to insinuate a couple of the songs into my ears again. Then I wanted more. Badly. And now I rate it just as more-ish as "La Revancha".
It juxtaposes the sweet, warm-deadpan voice of Cristina Vilallonga on some tracks (Amor Porteno, Diferente, Celos, Arrabal) with the roguish, rough-edged panache of Carlos Caceres describing the birth of the tango (Notas)and Jimi Santos (Domingo) and the tango-rap of Koxmoz (Mi Confesion). There's even a robot-like treated voice intoning the words to La Viguela, giving it a strangely religious quality.
Like "La Revancha", "Lunático" is steeped in a sense of place and culture but it's not Strictly Tango Argentino. The Gotans have tapped into a tango and a Buenos Aires of the imagination, adventurous and promiscuous and modern yet managing to be faithful to its deep roots.
A mysterious, sly, inventive and captivating work of outstanding creativity.