Villalobos Brothers – Somos (Villalobos Brothers, 2019)
The Villalobos Brothers hail from Veracruz in the Gulf of Mexico area. Their finely-crafted music includes an exquisite mix of traditional son jarocho, contemporary Latin jazz, catchy rock, flamenco and classical music.
The three brothers are violin virtuosos, with a beautiful technique that incorporates various influences, leaning on jazz and classical music. On Somos they treat the listener to fascinating violin interplay and poetic justice.
There is a wonderful mix of acoustic-leaning pieces and powerful tracks with drum set, electric bass and electric guitar.
The lyrics on Somos convey messages of love, peace and social justice, focusing on corruption in their home state, inequality, environmental justice, the Ayotzinapa student murders and poverty. “We believe in music as a positive, necessary and inexhaustible healing force, and we live to share our creations. We are not only troubadours of love and brotherhood, but also activists, speaking against injustice, corruption, greed and impunity.”
The lineup on Somos includes Luis Villalobos on vocals and violin; Alberto Villalobos on vocals and violin; Ernesto Villalobos on vocals and violin; Humberto Flores on electric and acoustic guitars, jarana; Rosa Avila on drums; Leo Sherman on electric and double bass; Arturo Stable on percussion on tracks; Javier Cabrera Jasso on percussion; Alberto Jiménez on electric guitar; Manuel Vásquez on cajón; and special guest Arturo O’Farrill on piano.
Somos is a charming and delightful cross-genre album rooted in tradition and social equity, forged by a group of talented young Mexican musicians.