Para Puente

CuBop / Ubiquity

The limited exposure I’ve had to Snowboy in the past has not really been all that pleasant. There seemed to be something too smooth about the product. So, I was expecting to not like this Tito Puente tribute at all.

Now, I’m really starting to wonder if I wasn’t thinking of somebody else. That smooth, light Latin jazz wrapped in cheese cloth I was expecting is nowhere to be found here. Para Puente is rough, rugged, and raw and so combustible you have to set a fire extinguisher by your stereo as it plays. Snowboy has outdone himself. This is pure fire. The spirit of Puente infuses the entire project with an undeniable, contagious energy. It=EDs exhausting to listen to. With Neil Angilley’s Fender Rhodes, Hammond organ, and mini-moog playing, the disc has a definitively ’70s feel, and immediately comparisons can be drawn with Ocho, The Palmieris, The Fania All-Stars, Ray Barretto, and the like. And this disc blazes right alongside the aforementioned greats’ better works.

Ubiquity Records:

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