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ALBUM REVIEWS

Marbin: Israeli Jazz

Read "Israeli Jazz" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

Marbin's name and music come from the combined visions of saxophonist Danny Markovitch and guitarist Dani Rabin. Dani was born in California but grew up in Israel, where he met Markovitch and first formed Marbin as a duo in 2007. “Both Danny and I grew up in Israel listening to Israeli music, but we also grew up listening to jazz, rock, folk and blues," Rabin explains. “We felt it's appropriate to name the album Israeli Jazz because it ...

LIVE REVIEWS

Marbin at The Firmament

Read "Marbin at The Firmament" reviewed by Mark Sullivan

Marbin The Firmament Greenville, SC March 29, 2018 Chicago jazz-rock band Marbin is one of the great road warriors, having toured the U.S. extensively since 2011. They make fans the old-fashioned way: one at a time. The band was founded in 2007 by saxophonist Danny Markovitch and guitarist Dani Rabin in Israel (which explains the group name, a mashup of their last names). After moving to Chicago, they released their first album in 2009. Taking ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Marbin: Goat Man & The House of the Dead

Read "Goat Man & The House of the Dead" reviewed by Dave Wayne

It's truly been fun to watch Marbin grow and develop over the past few years. Their eponymous, self- released debut album, from way back in 2009, was a duet affair with the two principals--saxophonist Danny Markovitch and guitarist Dani Rabin--plying their talents on a clutch of brief and very intricate instrumentals. Sounding at times like an ECM release gone rogue, the duo's obvious virtuosity and poorly-suppressed manic energy made their subsequent forays into heavy instrumental rock no great surprise. Yet, ...

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Marbin: Aggressive Hippies

Read "Aggressive Hippies" reviewed by Dave Wayne

Far from being just another jazz-rock fusion band, Marbin occupies their own stylistic space. More an instrumental rock band than a jazz fusion band, Marbin's music seems to come from the guitar hero world of Joe Satriani, Steve Vai and Joe Bonamassa. But there's a good deal of other stuff going on in their music. Steeped in blues, surf, and the folk music of their native Israel, in addition to jazz- rock, Marbin consistently avoids easy pigeonholing. Part of this ...

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Marbin: The Third Set

Read "The Third Set" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Marbin is known for its extensive touring schedules, coupled with the instrumentalists' exhilarating interactions. But in the studio, the musicians present a variegated jamboree of acoustic-electric pieces, often layered with memorable hooks and textural soundscapes amid the frontline's invigorating solo jaunts. However, The Third Set captures the unit's explosive progressive rock and jazz rock nomenclature at its finest. It's an unrelenting feast for the aural senses as guitarist Dani Rabin and saxophonist Danny Markovitch generate lightning fast unison choruses and ...

EXTENDED ANALYSIS

Marbin: Last Chapter of Dreaming

Read "Marbin: Last Chapter of Dreaming" reviewed by Dave Wayne

Back in the 1970s, fusion used to mean one thing; the melding of jazz improvisation and chord structures with the stylistic eclecticism and pure energy of progressive rock. As a recognizable formula emerged, it became common to hear the exotic strains of various ethnic musics in a jazz-rock fusion context. By the late '70s, its emphasis shifted again towards more accessible pop and R&B-derived sounds driven by the economic demands of the time, leaving us with smooth jazz. The 21st ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Marbin: Last Chapter of Dreaming

Read "Last Chapter of Dreaming" reviewed by Glenn Astarita

Dani Rabin is a burgeoning guitar hero and could shred with the best of them, evidenced by this first-class band's third release, featuring guest spots by drummer Paul Wertico (Pat Metheny) and percussionist Jamey Haddad (Herbie Hancock, Joe Lovano). Marked by a diverse track mix and genre-busting compositional frameworks, the artists cross that imaginary boundary, where enviable technical acumen coalesces with tuneful motifs, equating to a highly listenable form-factor. Nonetheless, the meticulously sculpted production, yields gratifying qualities as the band ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Marbin: Last Chapter of Dreaming

Read "Last Chapter of Dreaming" reviewed by Hrayr Attarian

Even on their eponymous debut Marbin's style was far from being derivative but with Last Chapter of Dreaming their third release in as many years they have matured and found their singular artistic voice. In a way this album expands on the themes and motifs expressed on their second Breaking the Cycle but the ideas are crystalized, excesses trimmed and the whole more cohesive.The cinematic ambience remains, imbued with poetry and subtle humor. “Breaking The Cycle" for instance ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Marbin: Last Chapter of Dreaming

Read "Last Chapter of Dreaming" reviewed by Sammy Stein

Marbin--Israeli saxophonist Danny Markovitch and Israeli-American guitarist Dani Rabin--began as a duo in 2007, but now regularly plays with percussionist Justyn Lawrence and bassist Jae Gentile.Last Chapter of Dreaming is the group's fourth album if its first is considered to be Paul Wertico's Impressions of a City (Chicago Sessions, 2009), where the duo was the “Mid East" contingent of the ex-Pat Metheny Group drummer's Mid East / Mid- West Alliance, but Marbin (Self Produced, 2009) was its true ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Marbin: Breaking the Cycle

Read "Breaking the Cycle" reviewed by Chris M. Slawecki

At its jazz-rock core, Marbin is the Israeli duo of guitarist Dani Rabin and saxophonist Danny Markovitch, sort of a Israeli version of Walter Becker and Donald Fagen, the essence of Steely Dan. Bassist Steve Rodby and drummer Paul Wertico, who cumulatively won 18 Grammy Awards as members of the Pat Metheny Group, provide the rhythm support for Marbin's second album and MoonJune debut; Wertico herewith returns the favor of Marbin's melodic contributions to the drummer's 2009 release Impressions of ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Marbin: Breaking the Cycle

Read "Breaking the Cycle" reviewed by Hrayr Attarian

Marbin's sophomore album Breaking the Cycle is very different than its eponymous debut. Gone is the Zen-like, expansive but quiet sound, in favor of a cinematic quality with intensely complex tunes full of color and texture. The lineup has also expanded from the duo of guitarist Dani Rabin and saxophonist Danny Markovitch to include bassist Steve Rodby, a few different vocalists and various percussionists--and, most notably, veteran drummer Paul Wertico, whose hypnotic and propulsive rhythms drive the opening “Loopy." A ...

ALBUM REVIEWS

Marbin: Marbin

Read "Marbin" reviewed by Hrayr Attarian

Categorizing Marbin's eponymous release as ambient jazz hugely underestimates its music. It is rather atmospheric, but also has enough improvisational substance to not just stay in the background. Marbin is the duo of guitarist Dani Rabin and saxophonist Danny Markovitz. The two also composed all the pieces on the record, ranging from the vaguely bluesy “Abadaba" and theatrical “Mei" (with added vocalese from Mat Davidson), to the Japanese-sounding “Crystal Bells" and gorgeous tango, “Cuba." The CD is ...


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