Fruta Madura [Ripe Fruit (2009)] is Viento de Agua’s latest release. James Nadal writes (in All about Jazz) that Viento de Agua is “an original Latin dance/performance band with a groundbreaking new sound.” The term, he explains, is a Puerto Rican expression used to describe the humid air that precedes a heavy rainstorm.
Nadal describes this group in most enthusiastic terms: The traditional Afro-Puerto Rican rhythms bomba y plena, are combined with various Afro-Caribbean rhythms and jazz to create a fresh contemporary style. The result of this fusion is an explosive sound that both seduces the most skilled dancer and stimulates the most sophisticated listener.
The self-produced Fruta Madura offers twelve original songs “with each one expanding the impression of what plena music should be.” Nadal explains that with the group’s dynamic live performances and the release of this last CD, “Viento de Agua in 2010 is on an assured course to grand success.”
Some of Viento de Agua’s other albums include their 1998 De Puerto Rico al mundo (Qbadisc Label)—which won the 2000 Sunshine Award for Best Caribbean Tropical Album in New York City and received enthusiastic reviews by The New York Times, Latin Beat Magazine, and others— and their 2004 Viento de Agua Unplugged: Materia Prima (Smithsonian Folkways Recordings), which was also met with much acclaim.
Director Hector “Tito” Matos states, “Our purpose is to disseminate our original and creative way of performing these ancestral rhythms not only to our Latino audience but to the rest of the world as well.”
For full profile page by James Nadal, photos and calendar for Viento de Agua performances, see http://www.allaboutjazz.com/php/musician.php?id=19539