Santana – Santana IV

santana iv reviewIt is very rare these days when a great group of musicians takes their time in the studio to put out a totally flawless album. It is also very rare when some really great music such as what is found on this album will most likely turn out to be a huge commercial smash. Several potential hits are found here, with Choo Choo being the most obvious. The instrumental All Aboard is tacked onto the end of Choo Choo. Sueno is another instrumental that brings back the feel of Europa, but this one is done on Spanish guitar. Most of this album is driving rock, but many different musical flavors are presented. Ron Isley was also a very good choice as lead singer on the two songs that fit his vocal style.

The only thing that I would change is the running order, swapping out the trippy instrumental Fillmore East with the upbeat Come As You Are. If you own any of Santana’s first three albums, you owe it to yourself to get this one. In some ways, it feels like that same vibe is still there, only more mature and focused these days. They have produced more than 75 minutes of good solid music for a bargain price, so this one is a no-brainer.

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