Wednesday, April 4, 2012

How Will the Wolf Survive? - Los Lobos

How Will the Wolf Survive

How Will the Wolf Survive? is the major label debut album of Los Lobos. In 1989, it was ranked #30 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 100 greatest albums of the 1980s. In 2003, the album was ranked number 461 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time.

"Don't Worry Baby" - Burnett, Perez, Rosas – 2:43
"A Matter of Time" - Hidalgo, Perez – 3:55
"Corrido #1" - Rosas – 2:42
"Our Last Night" - Hidalgo, Perez – 3:08
"The Breakdown" - Burnett, Hidalgo, Perez – 4:12
"I Got Loaded" - Camille – 3:20
"Serenata Nortena" – 2:53
"Evangeline" - Hidalgo, Perez – 2:43
"I Got to Let You Know" - Rosas – 2:35
"Lil' King of Everything" - Hidalgo, Perez – 1:19
"Will the Wolf Survive?" - Hidalgo, Perez – 3:41

I became aware of Los Lobos during the early 1980s with the release of their EP "...And a Time To Dance" and made sure I saw them live when they were doing the promotional tour for this album. They have since become a national act but How Will The Wolf Survives stands as one of the most enduring albums of its day. With the airwaves awash in glamrock and corporate-rock powerhouse groups, Los Lobos was a breath of fresh air. Its infectious mix of hard-driving roots rock, country, and blues judiciously tinged with the pulsing accordion of David Hidalgo provided an antidote to the stale pap being cranked out in the top-40 and AOR formats. My favorites are the irresistable Don't Worry Baby, I Got Loaded, the country-ish Our Last Night and, arguably the best song on the album, the accordion-driven The Breakdown. I think the title cut and the two Norteno songs are mediocre but the quality of the rest of the music gives it the five stars. How Will the Wolf Survive stands as the best mostly English-language album issued by Los Lobos. It is a landmark album that has yet to be matched by any of the band's subsequent releases except for the fabulous La Pistola y El Corazon. If your tastes run to the eclectic with a strong leaning toward the southwest, then this comes highly recommended. And by the way, the accordion is an important component of the music, so if you don't like accordions, you are not going to like this.

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