215

Itai Kriss: The Shark

Edward Blanco By

Sign in to view read count
Itai Kriss: The Shark Swimming through the ocean of jazz, navigating the currents of melodies and harmonies while avoiding the jaws of a shark, can be a blissful experience. There is one shark, though, that needn't be feared, masterfully created by Israeli-born flautist Itai Kriss. The Shark is an exercise in modern hard-bop and Caribbean/Latin rhythms that takes a big bite of jazz and leaves quite an impressive mark. His first album as leader, New York-resident Kriss has been actively involved in performing with his quartet, The Salsa All-Stars, and producing/arranging for Latin and pop recordings.

The Shark features heavy hitters, including pianist Aaron Goldberg, drummer Eric McPherson, and fellow countryman, trumpeter Avishai Cohen. Except for Jack Glottman's title track, the repertoire is all original, with some pieces composed while Kriss was in residence at Washington, DC's prestigious Betty Carter's Jazz Ahead program at the John F. Kennedy Center For The Performing Arts. Kriss' aggressive, exotic style and virtuoso technique set him apart from other flautists; his strong approach on the opening title track bears this out, as he leads the charge on a modern piece with a very inviting melody.

"Kamuvan" is a swinging piece of music featuring tenor saxophonist John Ellis, but the flautist remains the center attraction, even after an interlude by Goldberg. Joining Cohen on "Four by Four" makes this piece one of the disc's highlights, while the Latin rhythms kick in on the lovely, Brazilian-flavored "Breeza," which pianist Goldberg picks up nicely before handing it over to the leader. "Danzon No.1" is an obviously overt Latin piece that is easily at home on any Latin music album.

Kriss tears up the fast-paced "Sketch For Toki," aptly demonstrating his instrumental facility with rapid solo phrases. Kriss once again shares the space with Cohen on "Booty Call," album finale featuring a bouncy Caribbean rhythm and Omer Avital's fine bass work. There are plenty of highlights on the album, many of them from Kriss, who affirms his reputation as a flautist of note. The selection is varied and adventurous, confirming expectations that Kriss' The Shark is quite a catch—and well worth more than a single spin.


Track Listing: The Shark; Kamuvan; Gypsy; Four by Four; Chang Chang; Breeza; Danzon No.1; Sketch For Toki; Booty Call.

Personnel: Itai Kriss: flute; Aaron Goldberg: piano; Omer Avital: bass; Eric McPherson: drums; Avishai Cohen: trumpet (4, 9); John Ellis: tenor saxophone (2).

Year Released: 2011 | Record Label: Self Produced


Shop

More Articles

Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark CD/LP/Track Review The MUH Trio – Prague After Dark
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Les Deux Versants Se Regardent CD/LP/Track Review Les Deux Versants Se Regardent
by John Sharpe
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Molto Bene CD/LP/Track Review Molto Bene
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 23, 2017
Read Fellowship CD/LP/Track Review Fellowship
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 22, 2017
Read E.S.T. Symphony CD/LP/Track Review E.S.T. Symphony
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 22, 2017
Read "As If By Magic" CD/LP/Track Review As If By Magic
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: December 3, 2016
Read "For Free" CD/LP/Track Review For Free
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: February 13, 2017
Read "Super Petite" CD/LP/Track Review Super Petite
by Geno Thackara
Published: July 13, 2016
Read "Mujo" CD/LP/Track Review Mujo
by John Sharpe
Published: July 16, 2016
Read "Unlimited 1, Live at Catalina's" CD/LP/Track Review Unlimited 1, Live at Catalina's
by Jack Bowers
Published: November 22, 2016
Read "Istanbul Underground" CD/LP/Track Review Istanbul Underground
by James Nadal
Published: June 22, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!