PONCHO SANCHEZ

PSYCHEDELIC BLUES

2009-10-17

Poncho Sanchez is a fleet-handed percussionist who knows his way around almost any item that can be beaten, shaked or stirred. So, is this a disc featuring nothing but variations on the dreaded 10 minute drum solo? Not a chance. Sanchez has surrounded himself with a large horn section, a keyboardist and guitarist who end up being the featured course here with Sanchez adding the percussive spice. While the title suggests this to be a blues disc there isn’t a boogie or shuffle to be found. Instead, Sanchez and crew mix up an intoxicating brew of jazz and latin jazz with a number of smoking horn charts. Herbie Hancock’s "Cantaloupe Island", "Con Sabor Latino" and the "Willie Bobo Medley" (the later two featuring vocals from Sanchez) will transport you south of the border in no time while John Coltrane’s "Grand Central" aims more at the head than the hips with its free spirited chart. Those that do dig a short percussion interlude should check out "The One Ways", "Delifonse" and the title track. Each feature relatively brief solos by Sanchez which fit perfectly into the tunes without making you wonder if you should fade the cut before the sound of radios clicking off overwhelms you. Overall, a pretty decent listen. Smitty

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