I’m not going to attempt even a passing knowledge of Latin music in any of its forms. I have nothing to compare La Raiz with, which makes this review a little harder than others. One thing is certain though, this album hits the dance floor with its first note and doesn’t let up until the last song ends. Every song, from the rave-ups (“La Raiz,” “Pure Vida”) to the ballads (“Hasta el Final”), exudes sultriness and intimacy. It’s traditional influences filtered through contemporary pop sensibilities throughout an album of well-worn grooves.
The band includes three English language songs (“Hold On,” “Underneath” and “Thieves”) in what is surely an attempt to increase their crossover appeal. Musically. these tracks hold up with the rest of the material, but lyrically they sacrifice a great deal of their exoticism by taking this route. La Raiz isn’t a perfect album, but if you’re throwing a party and looking for a disc to get the asses moving, you could do a lot worse than this.