Julio Montoro is a Cuban multi-instrumentalist who in the past toured, among others, with Orchesta Reve and La Charanga Habanera, and for a while worked with Afro-Cuban All Stars voice Felix Baloy. In 2014 Julio already presented his solo debut 'Alma Latina' and on successor 'Black Roots' that album title seems to have evolved into the name of Montoro's band as well as his personal studio in Havana. The main voice on this album, for which Julio explored his black musical past, is that of Dayana Rosa Botello, a singer dividing her time between the Varadero nightlife and her collaboration with Montoro. On 'Black Roots' everything from the jazzy African-flavored rhythms in opener 'Sambembere', over more Cuban tracks like 'Romance' or 'Mulata Rumbera', to ska (the catchy 'Guitarra Bohemia') and reggae (closing track 'Somos Hermanos', reminding us of the repertoire of Amparanoia) and funk ('Funky Loco/Funky Crazy'). Unfortunately some tracks on 'Black Roots' sounded a bit too commercial to our ears (the Disney-like title track 'Black Roots (Raices Negras)' that could have made the soundtrack of 'The Lion King', the jazzy Santana vibe of 'Mozambique'...) to make this an entirely convincing listening experience.