SI*SÉ at Harbourfront Centre's Norigen Stage (235 Queen's Quay West) as part of Ritmo Y Color Saturday (July 28), 8 pm. Free. 416-937-3000. Rating: NNNNN
Seven-piece Latin groove mob
Si*Sé represent the sound of New York City.
There's no one defining vibe to the group's self-titled, Luaka Bop-released debut. Instead, smoothed-out cafe pop is juiced by salsa breaks, jungle beats and hiphop soul as one style flows into the next.
It's the kind of diverse, unusual group where it makes perfect sense that chilled-out singer Carol C is also one of NYC's roughest drum 'n' bass DJs. Just don't expect to hear any pounding club anthems at Si*Sé's mellow live gigs.
"Some people who know me as a DJ go to my shows and expect to hear the crazy hard beats," Carol C laughs over the line from Brooklyn. Si*Sé play Harbourfront Centre's Ritmo Y Color festival Saturday.
"I like tough tunes with a vocalist, but I don't want to do them myself. That stuff is all about aggression. Si*Sé is my "ahh,' mellow release time. When we made this record, I was spinning this insanely hard drum 'n' bass, and there was no way I could have continued to do that in the studio.
"The other thing is that this is a group, and especially one made up of all these different people and cultures. Everyone has their own little influences, so there's a little reggae here and a little hiphop or salsa there. We're like the UN. I don't think this could have happened anywhere else but New York."