CD Mapa Mundi (CD 1276649),
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Mapa Mundi

  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 222

  • Credits
    Producer
    Engineer

    Part of Siesta Records' ongoing dedication to becoming Spain's modern-day equivalent of Cherry Red Records circa 1984, the debut album by Cristina Georgina is a marvelous updating of the sound that Everything But the Girl perfected on their first couple of albums. The key similarity is in Georgina's alluring, smoky voice; her slightly flat low register and cool restraint is quite like Tracey Thorn's trademark deadpan, although Georgina is a "better" singer than the appealing but technically limited Thorn. Elsewhere, on the torchy ballad "En la Piel," Georgina's whispery coo recalls an earlier singer who turned liabilities into strengths, the still-underrated Julie London. (As is usually the case with Siesta releases, all the lyrics are in Georgina's native Spanish.) Musically, Mapa Mundi is in keeping with the label's inherent retro feel, with an alternately elegant and kitschy soft-pop vibe, but Georgina and her collaborators (mostly Alberto Matesanz, from the Siesta bands Mate and Plastic D'Amour) keep the sound rooted firmly in the present with subtle touches like the burbling electronics underpinning the swank bossa nova of "Collage." Not that Georgina is above overt musical callbacks: the unexpected and delightful album closer "El Mensaje" strikes an unapologetic '70s vibe with stadium rock guitars and organ that make it sound like something off of Wings' Venus and Mars. It's a surprising and effective end to a terrific album. ~ Stewart Mason

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