Multi-cultural psychotropical sensation Sonámbulo stole the show at the Caricaco Festival in Nosara this year. Devout fans waited all day and night for the group to take stage and when they did, the crowd was enchanted.
In lieu of lead singer Daniel Cuenca’s recovery from surgery for a rare spine disease , guitarist and brother David Cuenca took the reins. He has an intensity that is soulful and unnerving, like he knows something we do not because of what his hands are capable of creating. What’s so intriguing about Sonámbulo is how each member retains a distinct individuality that compliments and contributes to the beauty and vivacity of their collective creation.
The San Jose-based group of string, horn and percussion musicians from Cuba, El Salvador, Colombia and Costa Rica is on the verge of releasing their highly anticipated second album.
The first single came out in late February called, “La Maraca.” It’s a piece that has rhythms of Dominican merengue, root style guitars and a Peruvian chicha pace. The video features famous street musician Martin Irias who plays the trumpet and accordion in San Jose.
“The idea is to have that freedom of play with calm and complex parts…” as the video concept. “You have fusion and so much mixture, but [the idea] is not to just merge all these aspects [together], but also the colors, the textures of what we want to transmit with each song” the band explains. It is this unique understanding that audiences can be reached through other layers of expression that makes Sonámbulo so intriguing and popular. Their music effectively reaches into your consciousness and shakes you up like a fizzy drink – the feeling is both uplifting and unrestrained.
Citing musical influences like Spain’s Napolea Record, Cuba’s los Muñequitos de matanza, Mexico’s Café Tacuba, and Los Fabulosos Cadillas from Argentina, the group clearly has a vast repertoire of musical wisdom. Caribbean, African, Brazilian and other Latin American styles permeate their sound in a completely original way.
The group has being doing a lot of drumming and says that, “contact with people gives us a lot of creativity, the relationship with the people, the street.” This is a band that knows how to connect and utilize that connection to fuel their creative forces. There is a distinct feeling of interactive showmanship that drives audiences wild.
Perhaps it’s the fact that the group formed while working at Costa Rican circus Mago del Tiempo (Time Magician) that lent Sonámbulo their other-worldly magnetism. Whatever supernatural concoction Sonámbulo imbibes, it’s working. After the reaction from the crowd at Caricaco, it’s safe to say that their loyal fans are more than ready for a second album.