Eduardo Cabra of Calle 13, better known as Visitante, is one of the producers who seems to be unlimited in the types of Latin music he makes well.
Calle 13 expresses what it is to be Latin today
Diversity is one of the hallmarks of the Calle 13 sound. You got rap over Puerto Rican reggaeton, salsa, bomba and plena; Cuban rumba, timba and boleros; Dominican merengue and bachata; Colombian cumbia, Jamaican reggae and on and on. It’s like, “what are you man? Where are you from?”
Of course all of this is our communal Caribbean heritage. Of all the Latin bands, Calle 13 best expresses what it is to be Latin today. In the postmodern era, we are a little bit of everything, including some stuff nobody has thought of yet.
Trending Tropics is full of biting Caribbean humor
Calle 13 is on break so Cabra, after producing a number of notable records, is on to Trending Tropics with Dominican singer Vicente García, who won three Latin Grammys including Best New Artist in 2017 (guess who produced the record).
The work shows the same biting Caribbean humor in lyric and video that are signatures of the entire Calle 13 family (stepbrother Residente, Visitante and little sister iLe).
Cabra is a producer so technology is always present. In a Trending Topics show the tech feels almost like Devo meets Star Wars. Young Puerto Ricans are very good with tech, but older ones are not. We need to take over the world. ¡Ya!
The Trending Tropics album cover shows palm leaves with a network cable as roots. There’s some truth in that. Plants communicate with each other through their roots. They spread news, share resources and even fight. The guys are probably also saying that if we connect, we will grow.
The two-barred cross of the band’s logo is used in botany to identify very poisonous plants. They may be saying that knowledge is dangerous. But they put the symbol inside a television set, so maybe they are saying that television is dangerous. It certainly is the opiate of the masses.
Trending Tropics makes you dance, makes you laugh, and most important makes you think. This is art slipped into your headphones under the guise of pop music.
Trying to categorize it, I just don’t know how.
Trending Tropics plays SOB’s
Wednesday, September 4, 2019 ~ Trending Tropics plays SOB’s in Hudson Square, NYC at 8pm. 18+ Tickets $30
If I was in New York, I wouldn’t miss this show (we’re publishing on tour of the Latin capitals, and are in Puerto Rico right now).
If they carry on the project, you probably won’t be able to see this band in a small room like SOB’s again. There will almost certainly be some musical royalty in the audience. ¡Vaya!