Mavo, 2004, CD
Jazz Ruler Type: Latin
O’s Notes: No overdone gymnastics, just pure substance from pianist Valera and his strong team of musicians. John Patitucci plays bass, including a strong solo on the title track; Seamus Blake adds sax on four of the twelve tracks, notably “Prey To Indulgence” and “Metaphorically Speaking”; and drumming duty is split between Bill Stewart and Horacio “El Negro” Hernandez. Manuel wrote all of the tunes. They are a blend of Cuban rhythms with bebop, classical harmonies along with his groove. It is a sort of Latin Fusion. It works well!