Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help
235

Roberto Magris Europlane: Check-in

C. Michael Bailey By

Sign in to view read count Views
Roberto Magris Europlane: Check-in Roberto Magris's Check-in began its life as a self-produced recording reviewed earlier in these pages. Now with a new label sponsorship and distribution, this fine recording may find its larger audience. Magris is a pianist born in Trieste, Italy in 1959. Beginning his professional career in the late '70s, Magris went on to front several notable jazz combos, including Europlane (the jazz project from Central European Countries under the sponsorship of INCE-CEI Central European Initiative), the Roberto Magris quartet/quintet/orchestra, Dma Urban Jazz Funk and Alfabeats Nu Jazz.

Check-in finds the versatile Magris leading a nominal quintet fronted by saxophonists Tony Lakatos and Michael Erian. The two saxophonists kick off the festivities with a swinging contrapuntal duet introducing the Schertzinger/Mercer standard, "I Remember You. For almost two blissful minutes, the two saxists weave around one another in brilliantly traded eights, hinting at the melody, but never giving it away until closing the introduction in unison before the entire band comes in. Magris proves the superb comping pianist as he allows the reeds full reign. At least until the pianist solos and Magris spins out Monk notes without the dissonance. His time is quirky and never allows the listener's attention to wander elsewhere.

Conveniently positioned after this introductory salvo is the lengthiest piece on the disc, the minor blues, "Blues for My Sleeping Baby, which is a darkly lilting lullaby. All soloists turn introspective and the results are a light, flowing perfume of melody; this is no "Birk's Works. This highlights the impression that the Italian brand of jazz is always spiced con brio. Magris's approach for the remainder of the disc is seated firmly in the mainstream, while exerting a heady free spirit. His solos are always a surprise, with no predictability whatsoever. The pianist proves to be the most provocative soloist, throwing serrated lines through the expert comping of his rhythm section. He illustrates this best on the original compositions, such as, "African Mood and "What Blues.

The sonics have also improved with Magris's move to a label. The piano is sharp and well-defined. The cymbals are crisp and sharply demarcated. The bass is expansive. This is a thrilling release that, from start to finish, should satisfy the stingiest of listeners! I heartily recommend Check-In.

Visit Roberto Magris on the web.


Track Listing: I Remember You, Blues For My Sleeping Baby, Africian Mood, Luci Lontane, What Blues?; Why Did I Choose You, I Concentrate On You; Che Cosa Ce.

Personnel: Tony Lakatos--Saxophones; Michael Erian--Saxophones; Roberto Magris; Robert Balzar--Bass; Gabriele Centis--Drums; Fulvio Zarfet--Congas

Year Released: 2005 | Record Label: Black Saint | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop For Jazz

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Need To Bring Out Love
Need To Bring Out Love
Jmood Records
2016
buy
Enigmatix
Enigmatix
JMOOD* RECORDS
2015
buy
Morgan Rewind: A Tribute to Lee Morgan, Vol. 2
Morgan Rewind: A...
JMOOD* RECORDS
2014
buy
An Evening with Herb Geller & the Roberto Magris Trio: Live in Europe...
An Evening with Herb...
JMOOD* RECORDS
2014
buy
Cannonball Funk 'n Friends
Cannonball Funk 'n...
JMOOD* RECORDS
2013
buy
Sam Reed Meets Roberto Magris: Ready for Reed
Sam Reed Meets...
JMOOD* RECORDS
2013
buy
George Kahn George Kahn
piano
Jeremy Pelt Jeremy Pelt
trumpet
James Moody James Moody
reeds
Greg Murphy Greg Murphy
piano
Grant Stewart Grant Stewart
sax, tenor
Idit Shner Idit Shner
saxophone

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.