In addition to being one of the United States' top jazz cities, Los Angeles is also a strong center for Latin music. It therefore is quite logical that pianist Bill Cunliffe, a flexible and an always musically curious player, would put together a group of top local musicians to perform a stirring set of Afro-Cuban jazz. Cunliffe and his tentet perform five of his originals, a Steely Dan song, an obscurity, and three standards. All of the horn players, four top brassmen and the versatile Bob Sheppard on reeds, have solo space and the rhythm section is consistently burning. Even though much of the material is unfamiliar, these renditions are quite accessible, swinging, and heated. Fans of both Latin jazz and hard bop will find plenty to enjoy on this spirited outing.
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AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow