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The MUH Trio: The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark

C. Michael Bailey By

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Italian pianist and bandleader Roberto Magris has been busy on several musical fronts. The first is his recent study of hard bop as evidenced by his recent J-Mood releases including Mating Call (2010), Morgan Rewind: A Tribute to Lee Morgan Vols. 1 & 2 (2012, 2013) and One Night in With Hope and More...Vols. 1 & 2 (2012, 2013). The second musical front Magris has been addressing is the rediscovery of overlooked masters as in the releases of Sam Reed Meets Roberto Magris: Ready For Reed (Jmood, 2013) and An Evening with Herb Geller & the Roberto Magris Trio: Live in Europe 2009 (Jmood, 2015). Spinning out of these fronts, Magris returned to more Contemporary climes with Enigmatix (Jmood, 2015) and The Need to Bring Out Love (Jmood 2016).

With Prague After Dark, Magris initiates a new, European trio, MUH (for Magris and Czechs bassist Frankisek Uhlir and drummer Jaromir Helesic). The result is a very urban European offering of mainstream jazz trio music with just enough twists and turns to keep even the most jaded listener on his or her toes. His standards choices are interesting, an angular, swinging reading of Herbie Nichols' "Third World" where Magris' solo perfectly melds with Nichols craggy melody, a lyrically percussive presentation of Don Pullen's "Joycie Girl," and the Kern/Robin "In Love In Vain," played with flowing cross-rhythms maintained by drummer Helesic. Magris' compositional skills are fully on display with the playful minor-key blues "Another More Blues" and the surprisingly paced "Iraqi Blues." These pieces stretch the boundaries of off-time playing, generating music demanding attention. Bassist Uhlir contributes the light samba, "Nenazvana," where Magris allows the composer broad lyrical space. Uhlir opens his "Heart to Heart" arco with Magris providing sensitive ballad support. Prague After Dark is a clean scrubbed noir suite of new music.

Track Listing: Another More Blues; Nenazvana; Third World; Prague After Dark; Joycie Girl; From Heart to Heart; Song for an African Child; Summer’s Kiss; Iraqi Blues; In Love in Vain.

Personnel: Roberto Magris; piano; Frantisek Uhlir: bass; Jaromir Helesic: drums

Title: The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark | Year Released: 2017 | Record Label: JMOOD* RECORDS

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