Seven of the eleven songs on Tin Can Trust were written by the team of Hidalgo and Perez, including the incendiary opener “Burn It Down,” which features a guest vocal appearance from Susan Tedeschi. They also wrote the slow-burning title track, and the stunning stoner groove of “Jupiter or the Moon”, perhaps the best track of its kind since Traffic’s “Low Spark of High-Heeled Boys.” Cesar Rosas gets a chance to shine on the album’s two Spanish language songs, the cumbia “Yo Canto,” and the rollicking norteno “Mujer Ingrata.” There’s also a wonderful cover of the Grateful Dead’s “West L.A. Fadeway,” and if you’re a fan of guitar rock, you can hear it done right on the instrumental “Do the Murray,” and on “All My Bridges Burning.”
The fact that songs in such a variety of styles can not only co-exist, but compliment each other so well is a testament to the power of a band whose members know where they are going, and how to get there. As Louie Perez says, Los Lobos have “an intuitiveness that happens only from being in a band for so long.” The East L.A. band may be heading in new directions, but thankfully they’re getting there old school style, as a group of accomplished musicians playing together in the studio. More than 30 years down the road, Los Lobos have delivered one of their most compelling albums.