Feature: Carmen Sandiego - "Dandy Rasca"
by Pierre Lestruhaut
Even though Carmen Sandiego’s fourth release, Joven Edad, made it into CF’s best albums of 2010, many of us weren’t really paying attention to what Flavio Lira and Leticia Skrycky were doing as a duo a few years ago (which was interestingly documented in the short-film Dónde en el mundo) before the band had mutated into their present line-up of fully formed indie pop quartet. So for those who recently discovered their early records, it was clear that the band’s evolution over the years seemed to be more in the line of constant reinvention rather than linear progression, of adopting a different sound for each release rather than focusing on polishing a specific one. From the bedroom noise-pop experiments of Vida Espiritual (2007) to the simplicity, honesty and plain nostalgic sweetness of the very twee-inspired Nanas (2008) and Ristampa (2008), these were very disparate releases from what we would have expected of the band that captivated us with self-aware lyricism and well placed punch-lines in Joven Edad.
“Dandy Rasca” is the latest track from the Montevidean band, a pleasant two minutes of straightforward rock and roll and country guitar licks in what is clearly their most upbeat song yet, the one where perhaps they realize how much being a guitar-bass-drums line-up allows for a more accessible songwriting style without abandoning the quirkiness of indie pop. And even though it’s probably not their greatest song, it’s still a very satisfying move to follow their most attention-grabbing release and, at the same time, it’s the kind of song that has us both scratching our heads and quivering with excitement as to where this band might be going next.