Carlos Santana Releasing New Album in May
The 13-song set is an instrumental tour de force featuring tracks spanning from the late 1990's to the present. It's powered throughout by Carlos' instantly recognizable virtuoso lead guitar and the Santana Band's world-class musicianship (only one song features vocals from Santana's lead vocalists Andy Vargas and Tony Lindsay).
Collaborations include "Never the Same Again," which Carlos wrote with producer Eric Bazilian, and "In the Light of a New Day," which began as a demo that Narada Michael Walden shared with Carlos. "Spark of the Divine"—often played on tour to introduce songs including "Black Magic Woman"—leads in to "Macumba in Budapest," the first of two songs Carlos co-wrote and produced with Walter Afanasieff—the song vamps into a classic Santana Latin jam featuring Raul Rekow on congas and Karl Perazzo on percussion. The second, "Eres La Luz," the only track featuring vocals, highlights the irresistible Latin groove that embodies the world music essence of Santana.
Shape Shifter closes with two songs that are collaborations between Carlos and his son, musician Salvador Santana—who plays piano on both—including the rousing "Canela." The final track, "Ah, Sweet Dancer," is a song Carlos first heard in a taxicab in Germany—he tracked it down in a local record store and began performing it regularly on tour. The recording features only soulful solos from father and son, offering elegant closure to Shape Shifter.
Shape Shifter comprises mostly original compositions that Carlos has been stashing away for such an instrumental project—long awaited by fans—and he conceived the album's sequence as thoughtfully as its track selection.