Shake Rattle and Roll with Los Damn Ramblers
If you like the kind of music that makes you shake, rattle and roll, the debut album by Los Damn Ramblers, Vamonos, Vamonos is a must. This EP is like a crash course on the roots of rock & roll as it takes you on a beautiful, passionate, hair rising musical voyage through country, jazz, boogie boogie and some good ol’ kick ass rock & roll.
According to lead vocalist and guitarist of Los Damn Ramblers, the Grammy nominated, Elsten Torres (Fulano De Tal): “It happened one night, two musician friends hanging at a local joint sharing some beers and laughs, we got up, played a couple of Elvis, Cash, Beatles tunes, did it again a week later and Los Damn Ramblers were born. 2 years later, we managed to capture some of that unpretentious, spontaneous musical fun on a record. Throwback rootsy original groovy rock & roll… think Sun Records meets Los Lobos in Miami Beach while drinking cold crispy Southern Cuban beer.”
Indeed, Vamonos, Vamonos does have an “unpretentious” and “spontaneous” sound and vibe, it also has a feeling of camaraderie and love for this music and it reflects on the final product, which is one of those albums that one just can’t get enough of and just keeps on playing it over and over.
The rest the musicians who played on this project are seasoned musicians like Dylan Schiavone on electric guitar; Carlos Bedoya on piano, washboard, kazoo, vocals and production; Pablo Toro on drums and Rodrigo Zambrano on Bass.
The EP starts off with a bang with the title track, a raucous “Vamonos, Vamonos” which is sure to get you up dancing from the opening bars. On this semi bilingual track, Elsten sings about a girl who wants to cross the border and with its catchy chorus of “Vamonos, vamonos, I think it means we gotta go go…” it takes you on almost a visual and musical voyage through the south and all the great artists that came from there like Buddy Holly and with its amazing guitar solo it makes you think of all those great Texan guitarists like Steve Ray Vaughn or bands like ZZ Top.
The next track, “I Love You Too”, Los Ramblers take you on a trip through those southern honky tonk bars with, of course, a country song about lost love. I have to admit that I have never been a big country fan, but mostly because of that annoying twang in most of today’s country music, but I can’t get enough of this song and it might lead me to revisit some other country music, at least the classic artists.
“Come Out Of the Cold” is the song that has been launched as the first single and video and although it has a more straight forward rock sounds it also has an almost gospel, R&B feel to it.
“No Me Voy De Aqui” is a rockabilly ditty that is sung in Spanish. On this track one can also find elements of jazz that would feel right at home being played in some street corner on Bourbon Street in New Orleans.
“This Is My Heart” takes us on a trip back to the 50’s and the days of doo wop and I can picture the guys in the band standing around in a circle singing together under a light post.
“Boogie Baby Boogie” takes us back to the 50’s and the early days of rock & roll and a sock hop dance at the local gym and images of Jerry Lee Lewis, Little Richards or Fats Domino keep jumping into my brain.
“Pretty Boys” closes out this album with another guitar driven song about girls who prefer the “pretty boys with fancy cars and toys”.
This is definitely one of the most enjoyable albums I’ve heard this year. Being a music geek, I love the production and sound work on this album as one can clearly hear the interplay between the guitars and the bass and drums and the all important keyboard work on this type of music. My only issue with this album is that there aren’t more songs on it, so I hope a second volume will come and perhaps some live shows in California, whaddya say boys?
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