CRIOLLO @ CLUB SODA Friday November 24th, 2006

review by Eva Blue

Criollo played to a packed room at Club Soda to celebrate the official launch of their debut album “BaHiRe”. The crowd sang their songs and chanted the band's anthem “CRI..CRI..CRIOLLO” with fervor. It was an unforgettable performance with an excited and energetic crowd. 

The music was a tropical mix of Latin, bachata, hip-hop and reggaeton with smart lyrics all sung in their native tongue of Spanish. These Montrealers of Dominican decent (Salvador “Sol” Valdez, Jose “Chiro” Mata, Alexis “El Gordo” Grullon, Gilbert “Giby” Capellan) performed an unforgettable show. It was obvious that these veterans of the stage knew what they were doing and were having as much fun as their fans were.

The guys,El Gordo, rapper and member of Treizeme Etage with Sans Pression, Chiro, a legendary Montreal Spanish rapper, Sol, a well known director and rapper and Giby, the singer of the foursome, all have years of stage experience; and put on a performance equaled to and better than any of their previous shows; some of them have already performed to tens of thousands of people. It was a performance that no fan will ever forget.

Not only did they pull off their four-man show including three clothing changes, they brought musicians to back them up and multimedia to accompany them. The full 1 and half-hours of visual and musical entertainment did not disappoint fans that came from Ottawa, Toronto and New York. 

Keep your eyes and ears open for this Montreal band because they're going international! If you saw the show, you can boast that you saw them when they blew the roof off the Club Soda in their hometown.

Criollo's debut album “BaHiRe” has 19 tracks of unforgettable music. It's one of those albums that every time you play it, you pick up something new. There are so many layers to each song that the more you listen to it, the more you fall in love with the album. There are tracks that make you want to jump up and dance and others that make you stop and think. Even if you don't understand Spanish, you know that this album has depth and deserves recognition. 

You can pick up their album at any music store in Montreal or online music store including iTunes and don't forget to check them out on their website or at


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