There are few more surprising experiences for a music lover than to run into a rap album that, while not losing the questioning character that defines the genre, manages to survive the commercial contexts of the Cuban music industry.
En tiempo real (Asé-D Records / Emetrece Productions, 2016), the first work of the union of Charly Mucharrima and Los Niches clearly points in one direction: up. The group shines with its sound experimentation, in which rap and other genres such as timba, funk, and rock come together. The result is a product that departs a little from the fold of more orthodox rappers and is close to all kinds of audiences.
Who has been following Carlos Bravo's career for a few years (artistically known as Charly Mucharrima) in the group's Homeboys, Convoy Criollo, Cuentas Claras and Los Aldeanos, probably knew that with his talent and perseverance he would continue on the road, this time in another direction. The same happens with the brothers Yaseell and Raysel Sotomayor (Los Niches) who, trained under the influence of their grandmother, the renowned singer of filin and bolero Ela Calvo, have a long career on stage.
En tiempo real is a record that gives rap a different taste, and materializes the creative process that united its protagonists in 2009, when they met in the first edition of the Puños Arriba Festival.
If you thought that the choreography of rap was reduced to waving your hand up, you might be surprised by this phonogram that is inserted as a breath of fresh air in the island hip-hop scene. With this album, the group seeks to socialize the genre with danceable musical arrangements that do not stop shooting the rhymes and send a message to the people. So no wonder it was nominated for the Cubadisco 2016 award.
Charly and Los Niches not only have the power to bring reflection with their vibrant lyrics, but also to enter the pores of the listeners with their own vision of the underground, adapted to the new trends of fusion music.
The phonogram is composed of 16 tracks that, through instrumental exploration and particular mixtures, are perfect for living the night, clearing the mind and relieving the "too much" of every day.
Although the narrative of social issues predominates, it is a rap that transgresses monothematic and contestatory borders, and that looks for other ways of telling stories. So, we came inside the album with gems like Nada queda, along with the Cuban singer Gretell Barreiro. When in the first seconds it breaks the sound of the electric guitar, the good flow of the rhymes and the high notes reached by the Barreiro, we can already predict that the theme, which reflects the theme of love, will not fall into common places.
Then we have others like A-Rrima, a collaboration with La Alianza, and Será que tal vez, which are characterized by a purer rap and the sharp play of fast words, although they also become quite versatile, musically speaking. Within this set, it stands out Se baila, a song that can not miss in your playlist if your goal is to make good use of your feet. This is a theme in which musicians play with the desirable point at which rap transforms into a danceable piece.
The songs are written in their entirety by Charly Mucharrima and Los Niches, even when there are plenty of collaborations with the aforementioned artists and others such as El Estudiante, Yamil Reyes, Nene 9mm and MC Navi Pro. It also highlights the guitar and rock spirit of Miguel Comas, who added precise chords to several songs, in addition to assuming the weight of the edition and mastering of the mixes. The digital compositions were in charge of the electronic music producer, Carlos "Yongolailan" Martínez.
Paulito FG's bassist, Amilkar Marsk, put on the seal of guarantee to turn this rap into a danceable product and add aesthetic complexity to the group's new sound, through acoustic arrangements.
The union between Asé-D Records (Cuba) and Emetrece Productions (United States) made possible this phonogram characterized by musical exploration and particular mix of styles. Of course, do not be fooled by the cover proposed by Marcos López, too sober, minimalist, almost invisible ... I would say. This is an album that does not deserve to be chained to your latest options. Dare and put play. It's a real-time cannon shot.