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October 6, 2006

Review: Roberto Magris Europlane - Il Bello del Jazz

Roberto Magris Black and White at PianoRoberto recently sent me his newest Europlane disc, Il Bello del Jazz. I've been listening to it lot lately. You'll be sure to hear it in heavy rotation soon on the Classic Jazz Corner. This CD is another great example of the kind of high quality jazz being recorded in, and birthed from, Italy. Roberto hails from Trieste (Google Maps), which is in northeastern Italy just at the border to Slovenia, at the northern end of the Adriatic Sea.

Magris's playing is superb on this recording. He's got a great ear for both melody and harmony. He proves his agility as a band leader with his ability to support the soloists so well. Herb Geller's tone is spot-on throughout the disc, and the production sounds fantastic. Not many new CDs sound so well. It's clean but not overproduced or sterile-sounding, that phenomenon oh so common to contemporary recordings. Perhaps it's the Italian wine influence that makes the production sound so great.

Roberto Magris: Il Bello del JazzRoberto contributes three originals: "No Sadness", "Il Bello del Jazz", and "Parker's Pen." They're all up-tempo and give a lot of room for soloists to improvise. Jurkovich's guitar work on the opener is top-notch, and Engel's bass solo on "Il Bello del Jazz" is expressive and forceful. The band really smokes on "Here I'll Stay." The CD also contains moments of reflection on the slower, meandering tracks "Some Other Spring", "A New Town is a Blue Town", and "Pretty Woman", allowing Magris and Geller to showcase their attention to melody and grace.

Track listing:

1. No Sadness
2. Stray Form
3. Some Other Spring
4. Key Largo
5. A New town Is A Blue Town
6. Here I’ll Stay
7. Ah Moore
8. Il Bello Del Jazz
9. Pretty Woman
10. Parker’s Pen
11. Deception

Musicians:

Roberto Magris (p)
Herb Geller (as)
Darko Jurkovic (g)
Rudi Engel (b)
Gabriele Centis (d)

Album ratings (in blue notes):

Production: 4.5(5)
Composition: 4(5)
Improvisation: 4(5)
Groove Factor: 4.5(5)
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Overall Rating: 4.25(5)

If you live near/in Los Angeles, be sure to check him out out live:
Catalina Bar and Gril (Hollywood) October 11 and 12
The Jazz Bakery (Culver City) October 16

:: Happy sounds ::

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October 4, 2006

Review: Wes Montgomery - Full House

montgomery_full_house.jpgI just purchased this CD a few weeks ago and have finally had some time to really give it a good listen. As always, Wes's guitar and method are clean and straight-forward, which is something I have come to expect from the master.

Overall, there are 9 tracks. Tracks as follows:

1. Full House
2. I've Grown Accustomed To Her Face
3. Blue 'N' Boogie
4. Cariba
5. Come Rain Or Come Shine (Take 1)
6. Come Rain Or Come Shine (Take 2)
7. S.O.S. (Take 3)
8. S.O.S. (Take 2)
9. Born To Be Blue

This 1962 lineup is incredible, as this live album pairs Montgomery with tenor Johnny Griffin and the Wynton Kelly Trio (Wynton on piano, Jimmy Cobb on drums, and Paul Chambers on the bass). The players are on fire on this one, and their improvisational chemistry really shines. This is one live Montgomery album every jazz enthusiast should own.

Happy sounds,

Posted by pederhorner at 10:11 AM | Comments (0) | TrackBack

copyright :: peder e. horner, m.d. 2000-2007

October 3, 2006

New Site Layout : Blog Format

After years of procrastinating, I've finally updated the website to allow me to post play list changes and CD reviews much easier. The overall format is about the same, although I had to make many modifications to the guts of the cascading style sheet and master index to allow for Movable Type to do its magic.

Now comes migrating some of the older CD reviews to this new format. This will be moderately painful, but it needs to be done.

Now, on to some more great music.

Happy sounds...

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copyright :: peder e. horner, m.d. 2000-2007