I first learned about Alfonso Lovo when I was reviewing his fusion masterpiece La Gigantona for our esteemed friends at Ugly Things. Released by the Numero Group, the album fit firmly in the label's "cult cargo" tradition: self-financed, unreleased, bitingly funky. From the liners, I learned of an earlier Lovo album, the mouthful-of-a-name Terremoto richter 6:25 - managua. Terremoto was recorded in 1972, when Lovo was a student here in the States, in response to a devestating earthquake in his home of Managua, Nicaragua. It's not quite as strong as Gigantona, and shorter; but for a thrown-together response to an ecological crisis a continent away, it's pretty goddamn good. Bristling with emotion, introspection, outward frustration, Terremoto also allowed Lovo to define his future musical evolution. Many of the tracks act as a blueprint for Gigantona, with Latin-influenced acoustic guitar, burbling horns and lightly psychedelic touches.
Hey, why not shake things up?