This Boston, MA-area horns/percussion quintet is billed as a mambo band with pop sensibilities. The group features two trombonists, a percussionist, trumpeter, and baritone saxophonist. With this effort, they co-mingle mid-tempo, Latin-drenched choruses with peppery grooves and layered, mini-big band-type arrangements. The music is snappy, affable, and undeniably festive. The musicians' loose demeanor provides the radiant sheen that embellishes this production. And while this recording resides within the jazz idiom, the band merges a contemporary vibe with familiar stylistic elements. A joyful celebration of the musical spirits, for sure. On pieces such as "Tjader Dude" (a reference to the late vibist Cal Tjader), the band pursues elements of clave, with complex horn passages atop percussionist Ana Norgaard's pumping rhythms...a good shot of adrenaline for the Latin jazz genre indeed. ---
All Music Review - Glenn Astarita
"Imaginative...one of the best things I've heard in a long time."
--Bob Blumenthal (Boston, Ma)
"...intense stuff rooted in tradition....funky..."
--Steve Greenlee, Boston Globe
"Latin music, distilled to a pure essence."
--Dan McCenaghan, All About Jazz
"Brass Roots fronts the double-barreled trombones of Russell Jewell and Jim "Mondongo" Messbauer...and a devil-may-care disposition that mark a bright, optimistic effort of considerable promise."
--Michael Stone, Roots Music
"Messbauer's writing and his arrangements are jovial, inventive, attractive, and punch-drunk."
--Javier Quiñones, Jazztimes
"It is very difficult to impress me with Latin jazz recordings, the Brass Roots Cd is so unique with such a fresh approach to the music...it just floored me."
--ArturoGomez, KUVO-FM Denver, Colorado