El Juidero: New Rita Indiana LP & Video

Words by Eddie STATS Houghton, via Dutty Artz

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Speaking of the Dominican invasion, remember when we put you up on Rita Indiana? Well she just dropped an a new full length album called El Juidero and it is a tropical beast. Bloggy types are already calling her “the future of merengue,” an icon and a visionary based on this record, although it is worth pointing out that it is both too eclectic and too accessible to really categorize it as merengue. The craziest thing about it, in fact, is that it is both reassuringly grounded in strong musicianship and traditional Afro-Caribbean rhythms–retro even–and at the same time refreshingly weird and original. The biggest reference point outside the Dominican Republic is a fuzzy lo-fi rock aesthetic (“Da Pa Lo Do” even channels Vampire Weekend) but to hear the heavy reggae influence check “Pasame a Buca” and “Dulces Suenos”–which comes in like “Dub Fire” until you realize it is a completely justifiable cover/translation of the Eurhythmics’ “Sweet Dreams.”

But don’t take my (or Amazon’s) word for it, check out the video for the title track after the jump…

Kinda crazy, right? Seems like I was sitting at Wo Hop just the other night, discussing with Max how DR is in many ways the Brazil of the Caribbean and this video kinda sums that up for me–musically showcasing the side of Rita where she is a female, Dominican Seu Jorge, while cinematically it is itself a mini, Dominican 4 Days in September. In short, don’t think we’re not sizing her up for a Now Things profile of her own!