To-the-minute Afro-Cuban funk

Over the past 25 or so years, most of the Cuban music that’s reached European ears has been distinctly retro in both nature and sound, prompted by an appetite for decades and styles past. No-one, though, could accuse Cimafunk of disappearing into a timewarp. Yes, the singer –a former medical student born Erik Iglesias Rodríguez –has always been hot on soul and funk, but he coats it in the vernacular of the here and now, before dipping it into a bubbling vat of home-island flavours. The result is unashamedly the product of 21st-century urban Cuba–bright, high-velocity tunes that, in the words of Billboard magazine, have “brought a new groove to a Havana music scene whose needle has been stuck”. Not that Cimafunk himself feels he has a duty to uphold on stage. “I just always try to show myself as I am,” he explains. “It’s all about unloading myself.”