This is a scalding Latin/Fusion/Funk/Lounge masterpiece.  Released in 1976, Caldera showed incredible promise with this debut, only to release three successive records with little to no fanfare.  It’s a shame, this band was one of fusion’s finest outfits in the late 1970’s.

One wonders why “Guanacaste”, the albums opener, didn’t become a club classic.  This is incredibly danceable fusion with a slightly discofied latin beat.  Great tune.  “Coastin”, The 2nd track, is deftly executed funk.  The flute and female singer adds a light touch to the beginning of a greasy track.  After that the keys and guitar melt to form a Hancock/Santana sound.  Brilliant.

Then, the album throws in some extended jazz highlights–the kind of music you’d love to hear sitting in a hammock in Costa Rica watching the sun go down.  Great vocal and key work make this set memorable, well worth throwing in at your next barbecue.

++++- out of +++++