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  • Jonathan Widran


Though the name of the mighty Latin centric music ensemble she leads promises to always be on the cutting edge of fresh concepts in all related genres, Corina Barta – the esteemed Artistic Director and main composer/arranger of the Afro Peruvian New Trends Orchestra – has kept a lot of simmering, spicy hot and ultra-engaging melodic and groove-intensive fire under wraps in the seven years since she earned a Jazz Instrumental Song nomination at the 15th Annual Independent Music Awards for her work on their popular Uniting Beats debut.

The title of their continuously ecstatic, free flowing, funky, fun and romantic 75-minute follow-up Cosmic Synchronicities perhaps offers a clue as to the reasons for the delay – at least on a universal frequency level. Everything in the musical multi-verse had to align for the wondrous ten-piece group to hit all the cylinders of a set that rolls like the grandest, sexiest and sultriest (not to mention magnificently performed) Latin American dance party you’ve ever been to.

Thematically, the collection’s heart and soul foundation is the fascinating peppy march rhythms of the Peruvian Creole vibe (“Marinera Jazz,” “Palmero Siguayayay,” “Tun tun tun – La Herida Oscura”) and the epic Afro-Peruvian Festejo (with spirited swing) “Osiris.” Taking flight from there, the orchestra blasts through the geographical boundaries beyond Peru for some equally tasty excursions to the Amazon (the high energy, horn fired opener “Ecstasy Green”), Cuba (the sly and sizzling “Latino Blues”) and Brazil (the raucous, sass and brass-filled “Far Away).

Another eminently romantic delight is the lyrical, swaying “Baila y Goza,” which shifts whimsically between a Cuban Guajira and Afro-Peruvian Festejo, creating something of an ultimate fusion. Now that they’re setting trends again, here’s hoping the Afro Peruvian New Trends Orchestra returns with more majestic fire before another seven years go by.


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