...by Stephen L. Robbins
Welcome to Martini Land gets two Tiki nods. The first nod is for cool music. The second nod is for a cool 7-inch colored vinyl EP.
I love vinyl records and record players. They're fun, they're comforting and they're tactile. The jacket, the artwork, the grooves on the record, the record player it's like curling up with a good book next to a warm fire.
Welcome to Martini Land boasts four cuts three instrumentals and one vocal. All of them are superb thanks to four skillful musicians playing four groovy tunes.
The maestros of this boss collection of music are The Martini Surfers, a surf, R&B and beat combo from Barcelona, Spain. They are:
Tony "El Thompson" Mancebo: Lead Guitar & Vocals
Josep "Da Psico" Casas: Rhythm Guitar
Luca "IL Surfer" Ceruti: Bass
Sebas "Scirocco" Velasco: Drums
All songs were recorded at Spectra Studios. The sound quality is excellent, with that warm smooth-flowing waveform we've come to expect from vinyl recordings.
All of the songs were written by Tony Mancebo. The artwork was done by Marcel Bontempi. For me, the artwork on the record jacket is an important part of the tactile experience. The album description, on the back cover, deserves another Tiki nod:
"Welcome to a fabulous place settled between Europe and Oceania. Where the air is fresher, tastes are more intense and women are more beautiful. Live a non-stop party surrounded by waves and Martini flowing in every river, fountain and oasis. Enjoy the reverb of our "Martini-sound". Don't hesitate, there's no other choice. But be warned: If you try, there's no way back! Welcome to a new dimension of Paradise... Welcome to MARTiNi-LAND!!"
Mision En Torremolinos - A high-performance drum intro launches things into overdrive. Mision En Torremolinos is a reverb-soaked, rapid-fire powerhouse. It has all of the necessary elements to make it a terrific surf number. One thing is certain The Martini Surfers are the real deal. By the time Mision En Torremolinos ends, you'll know these men can P-L-A-Y.
Santa Maria Del Mar - This is a very gentle and serene song. Santa Maria Del Mar makes me think of tropical sunsets, palm trees and love. The guitar playing is ethereal and exquisite, with just the right touch of reverb to bring out the profound passion within Santa Maria Del Mar.
Olvide Mi Tabla De Surf En Afganistan - This is the only vocal cut on Welcome to Martini Land and it's a good one. Tony Mancebo's voice fits Olvide Mi Tabla De Surf En Afganistan perfectly. Olvide Mi Tabla De Surf En Afganistan is rock 'n' roll packing a mule-sized kick. As a side note, the lyrics aren't in English, but that didn't stop Ritchie Valens from scoring a big hit with La Bamba.
The Return Of El Vengador - Opens with a hard-charging drum cadence reminiscent of the hoofbeats of a galloping horse. When the guitars enter, you know it's a man an avenger hell-bent on chasing down his prey. The Return Of El Vengador has that definitive Spaghetti Western flavor. The acoustic guitar interludes accentuate the drama in The Return Of El Vengador.
Final thoughts: Everything about Welcome to Martini Land is top of the line. The music, the artwork on the jacket, the recording quality, and the cool 7-inch vinyl record are all designed for pleasure. Earlier I mentioned curling up with a good book next to a warm fire. I'd much rather curl up with Welcome to Martini Land next to a warm fire. I love it.
|The Martini Surfers: Welcome to Martini Land
|01) Mision En Torremolinos
|02) Santa Maria Del Mar
|01) Olvide Mi Tabla De Surf En Afganistan
|02) The Return Of El Vengador