Singer/songwriter, Charles Lavaigne, is beyond any doubt, a global artist. He’s from the Dominican Republic, resides in Spain, and plays/sings Rock, mostly in English. Charles usually garnishes his material with sonic elements taken from diverse cultural sources. His latest full-length offering, Songs of Carlos Aguinaldo, is a good example of such approach. However, the main driving forces behind this new material are the retro-sounds of classic English Rock (especially Led Zeppelin), and a certain alternative vibe from the ’90s.
On Songs of Carlos Aguinaldo Lavaigne takes every opportunity available to introduce subtle elements from genres as contrasting as Psycheledia, Latin American music, Funk, Folk, Pop and much more. Just listen songs like the vibrant “Volvarella,” the evocative “Twilight” or the Zeppelin/Pearl Jam-esque “The Hills” and you will immediately notice how rich in textures and styles the whole album is.
Charles’ impassioned and unapologetic voice, his always reliable backing band and the intelligent musical arrangements of each song, also contribute the record’s panache. Its overall length (about an hour-long) and level of sobriety are the only potential setbacks on this otherwise superbly-produced effort. Especially the latter, contrasts dramatically with the more high-spirited and “happy-go-lucky” character of his previous album, 2013’s The Birdfish.
Despite that, Songs of Carlos Aguinaldo will grow on you with each listen. This is a very distinctive beast that loudly roars while also seductively whispers. No matter where you come from or what your native language, Charles Lavaigne will make you feel culturally and musically compelled… that’s guaranteed.
01. Wandering Song
02. Wandering Pt. 2
03. The Hills
05. The Mirror, The Body
07. The Captain Went Out To Lunch And The Sailors Took Over The Ship
08. Like Spilled Waters
09. Half Sick (Lady Of S)
10. The Show
13. Star Love Song
14. Wolf Behind The Door
Release Date: July 29, 2014
Run Time: 64:40
Check out the song “Volvarella”