Ayaguna

Pianist/composer Omar Sosa has followed his superb 2002 release Sentir (Grammy Award-nominated for best Latin jazz album) with a live album, recorded in July 2002 in Yokohama, Japan.

Pianist/composer Omar Sosa has followed his superb 2002 release Sentir (Grammy Award-nominated for best Latin jazz album) with a live album, recorded in July 2002 in Yokohama, Japan. Sosa was joined by percussionist Gustavo Ovalles; their collaboration has resulted in one of the finest live jazz albums in recent memory. Sosa, a Cuban-trained pianist, plays with an inspired fervor reminiscent of Keith Jarrett's definitive performance on the 1973 Bremen/Lausanne discs. Sosa cuts an agile son montuno figure on "Toridanzón" and transforms the playful opening phrases of "Una Tradicion Negra" into a propulsive, joyful celebration of tropical rhythm. Sosa is clearly audible shouting in the midst of this exhilarating number—an impulse that may nearly overcome the listener as well. "Dias de Iyawo" travels from an elegant lyricism to an explosive, much darker summary passage. The entire album is simply transcendent. Sosa is shaping a new synthesis of Latin and American jazz.—PVV