Rumba Club is no stranger to the world of Latin Jazz. The band was formed fifteen years ago in Baltimore and since their inception, has developed a faithful following, and it isn't surprising, as evident in this their latest effort "Radio Mundo".
This project is a tribute to legends such as Coltrane, Donald Byrd and Cole Porter as well as Latin giant Eddie Palmieri and perhaps the greatest Charanga orchestra, Orquesta Aragon as well as La Sonora Poncena.
This is a truly exciting recording. From the opening percussive prelude and gradual buildup of Joni Mitchell's "This Flight Tonight" to Porter's "Every Time We Say Goodbye" beautifully rendered in a luscious bolero style, Rumba Club let you know what's ahead, a cacophony of polyrhythms and the ever present and driving percussion that never leaves you stray from from their musical message. All their musical elements come together in Coltrane's "Straight Street" with beautiful solos by trumpet player Alexander Pope Norris, sax player Paul Hannah and pianist Tim Murphy, all very sought-after musicians. Surprising is their "Fire in the Belly" with what they call "Ritmo Experimental" experimental rhythm that sways and crosses creating a mesh of aural textures, coupled with the modal improvisations that depart from the typical "licks" of the jazz idiom, exceptional piece. Worthy of mention is their handling of Latin standard such as "Quien Sabe Sabe" with the driving vocals of Alfredo Mojica and Gary Sosias.
Rumba Club's "Radio Mundo" converges and successfully brings to a swinging perfection the exiting worlds of Jazz and Latin music at the hands of very talented and committed musicians. Be it standard jazz, rumba, bolero mambo to experimental rhythms. This is a must for any Jazz/Latin music collection. It may well be worth exploring their previous recordings "Desde la Capital", "Mamacita!" and "Espiritista" all from Palmetto.