Release Date: Sep 12, 2006
Record label: Hollywood
The simple fact, not stated nearly often enough, is that Los Lobos are one of America's truly great rock & roll bands, and they've been making consistently strong albums since 1984's How Will the Wolf Survive? But 1992's Kiko raised the stakes for Los Lobos' work in the studio with its edgy atmosphere, ambitious production, and expressionistic, purposefully off-kilter textures; it took their music in new and unexpected places with confidence and fire, but they seemed a bit unsure of where they should go down the new trail they blazed. Released in 1996, Colossal Head found them replicating Kiko's sonics without approaching its emotional power, while their subsequent recordings found them retreating into the safety of their status as America's finest roots rock band, which is hardly a bad or unsatisfying place to be. But The Town and the City is the first album where Los Lobos have allowed themselves the same degree of freedom and room to play with their signature sound as they had on Kiko, and the result is a quietly exhilarating experience.