Cilantro Boombox Shine

Cilantro Boombox Shine
7
"We're gonna groove tonight like Maurice White," proclaim Cilantro Boombox on their aptly titled sophomore offering, Shine. Though the Austin, TX-based octet (which originated as a casual collaboration between bassist Felix Pacheco and Ocote Soul Sounds saxophonist Joe Woullard) have quite a ways to go before they can stand with the mighty Earth, Wind and Fire, that doesn't mean that they don't ignite a few positive and infectious vibes of their own.
 
However lyrically glib the criticisms of social media and cell phone addiction are on opener "Living in a Box," its contagious Latin disco drive might have you reconsidering that next selfie. Cilantro truly shine on "Onan's Disciples," where a dreamy acid jazz-flavoured groove is punctuated by stabs of brass, while the multi-layered Afro-funk excursion "Makossa Con Son" allows the group to stretch out into more adventurous terrain (dig the tenor sax solo and textured percussion), suggesting that this outfit might be best enjoyed live.
 
The occasional weak cut — like the directionless "Love For Money" — aside, Shine is a solid springtime party-starter. (Independent)