J Mancera – Mancera #5
There are hints of Latin in the songs of J Mancera’s Mancera #5 (2016). But they are only hints, as not one song can convincingly be called Latin jazz – or any other specific genre.
Saxophonist Mancera puts a little of multiple genres in each song, covering a wide range of musical tastes. He plays soprano exclusively in this set. His accompanists are Jeff Berlin, bass guitar; Sean Wayland, keyboards; Nick Moroch, guitars; Nate Wood, drums; and Memo Acevedo, percussion.
The title song opens the set. It’s a delightful, sunny piece. Berlin’s bass line gives it a hint of funk, but it’s mostly pop with a jazz lean. Mancera doesn’t take a break as he glides from melody to interlude. Even so, the accompanists make this package what it is, with each player contributing subtly yet effectively.