The band that have successfully melded indie rock and Mariachi music for close to two decades made their first trip to Mexico City to inform the tunes that would make up their ninth album, Edge Of The Sun. It is also a record that finds the band drawing on their many friendships over the years to add even more shades to their broad palette.
The Tex-Mex champions add some keyboards to the mix during the melodically driven opener Falling From The Sky. Silky voiced Ben Bridwell from Band Of Horses fleshes out what is one of the band’s most bright pop choruses. Things head back to more familiar territory when good friend and longtime collaborator Sam Beam adds his beardy whisper to Bullets And Rocks.
Cumbia de Donde is rich with flamenco sounds and treads closely to Gipsy Kings territory whilst maintaining the Calexico dustiness. It is still Joey Burns’ emotive voice that is the band’s biggest drawcard, but the others are no slouch as the steel on When The Angels Played and John Convertino’s crisp drumming on Woodshed Waltz attest.
Edge Of The Sun finds Calexico as full of hope as you are ever likely to find them even if their signature sounds can still muster a sense of intrigue. Calexico are still the finest desert noir band going around.