Alvarado is 'among the cream of a new wave of globe trotting Argentinean tango singers, but his approach is decidedly old school' Rhythms
On Guitar Tango: Más Allá Martín Alvarado's honey-sweet tenor tones lead and Horacio Avilano's strutting guitar provides the accompaniment. Bound together the two musicians pay due respect to tango's rich history, while gently exploring their own contemporary interpretation of the universally celebrated Latin genre.
Martín Alvarado is a Buenos Aires-born singer who has circled the globe with his traditional tango brand. Now best known for his vocals, Alvarado also plays the guitar and has a long held affection for the slap and strum of its strings. Horacio Avilano has been finding his way around the frets since the age of twelve. His musicianship is bound with a deep respect for tango traditions and form. Choosing to play only by ear, his gesture and phrasing is delivered naturally and without hesitation. His style is minimalist his fast fingers never overpowering Alvarado's silken song. Most of the material on Guitar Tango: Más Allá was recorded in one take, investing the music with a tangible sense of immediacy.
Argentine tango typically revels in nostalgia, a creative theme sociologically connected to the cultures found in port communities. Many of the song lyrics on Guitar Tango: Más Allá pine for lost love, lost hope and lost time. 'Solitario' is an ode to feelings of isolation and loneliness, and the duo's stripped back arrangement of Chilean classic 'Gracias A La Vida' conveys a defiant yet subtly mournful tone that is entirely appropriate for the anthemic protest song.
The gently lulling song 'Petit Bar' is the first ever recording of this song, which is thought to be one of the last ever written by tango guitar legend Roberto Grela. Grela sets words by poet Homero Expósito, shifting between a strong march-like melody and passionate ascending exclamations. The lyrics tell the story of two tango dancers who meet in a bar and fall in love. Though sweet in subject, the tale isn't free from dark tinges of melancholy with Alvarado exclaiming 'But in the end, there were no flowers, no violin to pawn', a telling almost pessimistic commentary amidst the contrasting high voltage romance found elsewhere in the text. Alvarado was honored to have this song passed to him by members of the deceased poet's family in recognition of his exceptional interpretation of Expósito's other works.
Turning the tango genre on its head while worshipping at its feet is no small task but one that Alvarado and Avilano perform with a gentle grace. Subtle yet still brimming with passion, this is unadorned tango straight from Argentina.
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