A mambo big-band like you’ve never experienced, bandleader Sergio Mendoza helms one of the most exciting Latin music bands today. He and his orchestra – which can stretch to 19 pieces – bring a fevered energy and vital approach to classic mambo and cumbia sounds.
Informed by influences like Perez Prado and Chico Che y La Crisis, the band is also directly influenced by Mendoza’s experience playing in Calexico, Devotchka, and Mexican Institute of Sound. Mendoza, a native of Nogales, Sonora has made a mark as a multi-instrumentalist with those celebrated groups and what he has brought back to his own band is an otherworldly – but urgent – synthesis of time and regions.
While Duran’s vocals create that classic vibe, the band’s progressive arrangements and unique instrumentation make for a vital sound that keeps the band well off the nostalgia track. The vihuela, (Mariachi Guitar) lap steel, and Mariachi trumpets along with a baritone sax and a percussion section keep dancers on their feet.
The band toured Europe and the US around their first album Mambo Mexicano (Cosmica Records, 2012) and are readying to record a new album for release in Spring 2014.