Roberto Magris(Italy)-Match Point
Composer: Roberto Magris
Album: Roberto Magris-Match Point
Label: JMood Records
On Match Point, his latest album, Italian pianist and composer Roberto Magris gathered together a brilliant line-up of accomplished musicians: Alfredo Chacon – Vibraphone And Percussion, Dion Kerr – Bass, Rodolfo Zuniga – Drums on what can be described as a festival of rhythms and styles from bebop, to blues, and Latin.
His signature style and imaginative arrangements put a new spin on compositions by Richard Kermode, McCoy Tyner, Thelonious Monk and Randy Weston along with four originals that blend into the mix like a charm.
One of the special beauties of the album lies in the delicate balance and fusion between piano and vibraphone radiating a warm melodic atmosphere filled with generous spaces to improvise.
Plenty of surprises, the album takes off with Yours is The Light, made famous by Santana on his Welcome album. Of course, there’s no guitar here, nevertheless, Roberto Magris takes it to new jazz heights while maintaining its Latin edge and beauty. It is a pity that Kermode died young; he would have been so proud to hear his composition wearing these new clothes. Searching for Peace is a 15-minute long rendition of McCoy Tyner’s ballad, an opportunity for subtle improvising and rhythm changes. The sunny Samba for Jade is another showcase of the virtuosic piano-vibes pair based on a memorable melodic theme signed by Magris. Magic Blues, is exactly what the title promises: blues made magic by a combination of extended solos of vibes and piano. On Thelonious Monk’s Reflections, the pianist takes the liberty to surprise us with an imaginative version that maintains a beautiful fluidity through the fast-changing harmonies. Caban Bamboo Highlife retains the festive mood and alert rhythms of the original piece, bringing forward the outstanding art of Rodolfo Zuniga. Without the horn section blowing on the original, the sound is smoother and graceful yet not losing its playfulness. Match Point the title track, another original, goes vibrant and swinging, the band is going over the top in a frenetic ride. To use just one keyword to describe this album: splendid!
Roberto Magris @ JMood Records
Sinclair Lott(USA)-Checkered Past
Album: Long Story Short
Label: Blue Canoe Records
Drum extraordinaire and composer Sinclair Lott delivers a thoughtful straight-ahead jazz album with a modern twist. Featuring Bob Sheppard (saxophones), Tigran Hamasyan (piano), Danny McKay (bass), and Sinclair Lott (drums). This ten song album titled, “Long Story Short” features seven original compositions and three cover tunes by Dizzy Gileespie, Dave Brubeck and Ornette Coleman. Fans of traditional jazz will enjoy listening to Sinclair’s Story of music with this uplifting collection of compositions and performances.