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Mango Punch: Una Casita Blanca

Mango Punch's Walter Suhr is a great front man (as multiple Houston Press Music Awards wins prove), but his real talent lies in songwriting. His band Mango Punch's new CD, Una Casita Blanca (A Little White House), shows Suhr's considerable range as a writer with tunes that range stylistically from flamenco to sweet, simple pop and folk-tinged dance numbers, all of them radio-ready. Opener "Dar y Dar" (To Give and Give), may be Blanca's strongest tune. Driven by a flamenco-style guitar, it tells the story of a one-sided love — "Dar y dar y dar y dar y no recibir nada a cambio / Hace que el amor se vaya acabando" (To give and give and give and give and receive nothing in exchange / Finishes a love). Another highlight is the very danceable "Vete" (Go), a laid-back brush-off — "Vete pa que sepas lo que te ha querido" (Go, so that you can know how much I've loved you"). Suhr's voice seems to have deepened over the last couple of years, not in key, but in depth. There are more layers to his vocals, and more dynamics and nuances. He continues to grow as an artist, never satisfied with "good enough," and likewise for Mango Punch's instrumentalists. If there's a shortcoming to Una Casita Blanca, it's its 38-minute running time — much too little of a good thing.

 
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