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LATIN

Los Amigos Invisibles Commercial

Nacional

June 8, 2009
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Eleven years since they appeared on the cover of their debut as poolside dudes gawking at a foxy lady in a bikini, the good-time guys in Los Amigos Invisibles are still insatiable party animals. The Venezuelan band has long been a favorite live act for people who normally don't even like Latin music; the songs are exuberant and vivacious enough to transcend language. But in the studio, Los Amigos Invisibles had been treading water since 2000's "Arepa 3000," turning out albums that locked into the same shopworn groove. It's a relief, then, to hear fresh ideas and rhythms on "Commercial," the band's newest cocktail of disco, funk, rock, and space-age lounge. While the album doesn't exactly break new ground, the songs at least amount to a summer soundtrack perfect for days at the beach, nights on the dance floor. Following a rave-up introduction that falsely suggests the album will rocket into orbit, "Mentiras" puts the band in funkafied party mode right away. "In Luv With U," sung in English, is cute if dispensable. "Viviré Para Ti," a love song, glides along to a breezy beat courtesy of featherweight vocals from Mexican singer-songwriter Natalia Lafourcade. Like the cream of Los Amigos Invisibles' music, it hits the sweet spot between the heart and the hips. (Out tomorrow)

JAMES REED

ESSENTIAL "Viviré Para Ti"