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Jazzcat "stef" RSS Feed (Genoa, Italy Italy)

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Trial By Fire: Live in Leningrad
Trial By Fire: Live in Leningrad
Offered by Fulfillment Express US
Price: $14.48
50 used & new from $3.35

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Yngwie's Finest Hour, October 29, 2008
I love Yngwie Malmsteen, I'm sorry, I may not be that objective in my opinion (but I don't think so), forgive me if this is the case, but that's it. I love the man and his music (at least his BEST music like the performance recorded in Leningrad). I'm a guitar wanker from the eighties too in the end, so I can't do nothing but LOVE the man. He in the eighties meant something very special, a new way of approaching the instrument, the techniques, the music, the same idea of the guitar hero role. He is a GIANT in the history of the guitar, noone can deny this thing. He did his time, probably his career may be considered closed now, because artistically he has already given all what he could give, ... but man, at the time when this album was released, he was the King. This album is Yngwie's finest hour in my opinion. Apart from the LEGENDARY first record, Rising Force, this is the album I would suggest to someone who would ask me the album to know and appreciate Yngwie Malmteen's music. We all know of course which music is it. Neoclassical music, an hard rock shaped with some classical forms and parts here and there and with a mindblowing guitar work allover. So I'll not spend too much words on Yngwie's brand of music. I'd simply say that this album is the recording of a fantastic concert, where Yngwie played almost all his best songs and instrumentals (some of them may have been left out, but hey ... it's just a single cd), with great intensity and passion, displaying all his arsenal of licks and ideas with an attitude SO bad that is a pure delight!! The band is tight (fantastic are the duels between Yngwie and Jens Johansson the keys player) and supports Yngwie in the best way. I'd point out the "Black Star" version which is PHENOMENAL, at some point even better than the one recorded in the first album (take not of how Yngwie enters with his solo at 1.28, a MONSTER!!!), a wonderful version of Hendrix's favourite "Spanish Castle Magic" where Yngwie proves without any doubt that he is a real GIANT of the instrument and its languages and not only a shredder. He literally EATS HENDRIX ALIVE!! The solo Trilogy Suite/Spasebo blues is a GEM in itself and alone deserves the price tag (in the Blues section Yngwie blows any Clapton away ... listen to how Yngwie shapes the solo, how he has mastered the style, his knowledge of the blues language and the licks, his vibrato ... astounding). For real. Yngwie is a GIANT in the history of the guitar, be respectful because he deseves to be remembered as one of the 10 or 15 more important rock players ever!!! He eventually stands shoulder to shoulder with his heroes Blackmore and Hendrix because he didn't copied them even if they influenced him heavily (and he always admits this), but he used what he loved in them to shape his own style, which is perfectly recognizable from the very first note, and this is a sign of GREATNESS. YNGWIE IS A GIANT. Thank You Yngwie J. Malmsteen for 25 years of inspiration, for your purity, honesty, integrity and committment to music!

PS (I interviewed two times the man few years ago for a very well know metal magazine here in Italy. I can say that he was really nice, warm and funny. He was in Florence for a concert one of those times and when I told him that in my hometown there was Paganini's violin IL CANNONE on display in a museum, he prayed me to go over there in Florence with my car and to take him back to the museum to see and pay tribute the master's instrument! He even asked me to take a bottle of Brunello di Montalcino with me so we could drink together! =))) he was really funny! It never happened because I couldn't go, but he was lovely!)
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 19, 2013 6:39 AM PST


Speed Of Light
Speed Of Light
5 used & new from $29.75

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I waited YEARS to own this one, now I have it in my hands!, October 14, 2008
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This review is from: Speed Of Light (Audio CD)
Since I learned from Don's videotape "The Blues from Rock to Jazz" in the eighties I have been in search for this album. Don is a phenomenally gifted teacher and guitar player with a style of his own. I was hooked by his style learning from the videotape (a tape that I suggest to every player, guitar players mainly of course) and now finally I own this one, which is a rare out of print cd. I found this one on Itunes (Amazon has it too, but I'm in Italy and the download from Amazon is not available) and in a minute I had it. Crazy!, if you think that I searched the world for this one in the passed years! =))) Well now I have it! I'll say that Don write exceptionally beautiful music that really makes this album a "must have" for everyone interested in good, really good music. It is a very jazzy music of course, with a touch of electronic extravaganza that some people may like, some may not. Don is a fabolous soloist, really fabolous, he's a lot into Charlie Parker but he doesn't stop there. His style is well rounded in every idiom ,... but here and there you'll find Bird language. In some tunes, like in the second one, "Robben's bebop blues" that stuff is allround of course. That one is a tune a lot of guitar players may remember because it was in the tape, just at the end of the lesson and he used it, exactly to explain Parker's phrasing on blues progressions. But I was saying Don doesn't stop on Bird. He developed a style which incorporates a lot of influences, John McLaughlin over any one else maybe (listen to "Apache nightmare" for example, ... there's a lot of Al DiMeola too). What really makes this album stand out are the compositions. Really beautiful! The album is various, it goes from bebop blues to acoustic, to fusion type of things, all created and executed at the state of the art level! Some people may like or not Don's use of the synth guitar. I think that he uses it with a lot of taste. And that it adds some spice to the recipe of this album. The thing that to me doesn't work sometimes are the electronic arrangements (electronic programmed drums and keys stuff) that sometimes really are a little dated and sounds too mechanical and artificial. If those tunes were played by real palyers they would be even more great! But I care for the music, ... in a sense for the substance that lies behind, and with Don's there a lot of it! A magnificient player and a magnificient album. Finally I have it.


Speak No Evil
Speak No Evil
11 used & new from $28.00

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Speak no evil about "Speak no evil"., October 12, 2008
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This review is from: Speak No Evil (Audio CD)
Wounded Bird is a record company dedicated to the reissue of lost albums, albums that the major would not reprint for a reason or another, but that are very sought by the collectors, generally speaking. This is the case with "Speak no evil" by the great, late, Buddy Rich, as we all know, the world's greatest drummer. This album was released in the seventies and you can clearly feel the influence of the period on Buddy's charts choice. The arrangements are all on the funky jazzy side. It's not the big band sound one commonly associate with a Jazz musician such as Buddy was. This is something different. Very often there's a back beat feel but everything still swings in Buddy's hands. "Speak No Evil" music is still explosive like the best Buddy's efforts but it has a strong funky feel that personally I like very much. There are even some vocalists that make nice choruses sometimes behind the band. Among the musicians involved here you'll find a great Kenny Barron at the electric piano. I know that most Buddy's lovers would find this album weak, due to its funky feeling, but I don't agree. Buddy was splendid everything he played. "Speak no evil" makes no exception! (The cover is very beautiful and inside you'll find the famous Buddy's picture in a lovely Kung Fu suite! Very Kill Bill, very Tarantino!!!)


Just Friends
Just Friends
7 used & new from $24.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful Jazz Carillon, September 27, 2008
This review is from: Just Friends (Audio CD)
This album is so marvellous that even my girlfriend loves it (and everybody knows that women usually, hate Jazz)! And this is essentially all that I would like to tell you about this exceptional album. But I know that a serious review can't end in this way! =))) So I'll add something more. It is a collaboration between three incredible musicians that together create a music which is perfect and very different sounding, even if still very inside the jazz tradition. Infact we're talkin about at least, two very unusual instruments in Jazz, Harmonica (the incredible Toots) and Harp (Johnny Teupen). Harp is heard very seldom in Jazz records, ... and it's a shame, especially if it is used in THIS WAY! A wonderful sound! It seems a sort of delicate and precious Jazz carillon sometimes! Kuhn is the man at the piano. Of course drums and bass are involved too and the musicians are less known guys (Jean Warland bass, Bruno Castellucci drums, there's even a cornet player, extremely talented by the way, Ack Van Rooyen). The program is wonderful, a selection of standards that in this setting finds new beauty, ... just to name a few, Just friends, Sunny, A child is born, Autumn leaves, The days of wine and roses and so on. Maybe you think you have enough versions of these tunes, but I don't think so. You DESERVE to own these too. Really, this is one of the most beautiful, deep, swinging, and at the same time friendly to listen to jazz albums I have encounter in the last years. I know it by memory now because I have listened to this a thousand time ... so many times that once my girlfriend from the bath asked me ... "what's this music my love? .." and I, really worried asked her "Why?" and she answeared ... "it is SOOOOOO beautiful!!!!" ... Wow, I said to myself ... I have chosen the right girl! =))) Buy this album my friend, you will do yourself a favour. It is wonderful and by the way, it is recorded extremely well. EXTREMELY well. The combination of harmonica, piano and harp ... is unbelievable in my Avalons! BUY THIS ONE, no matter the price. A work of art. You will thank me later.


Jazz & Romantic Places
Jazz & Romantic Places
Price: $13.43
10 used & new from $7.50

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very Nice Trip, August 27, 2008
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This review is from: Jazz & Romantic Places (Audio CD)
This album by the Dave Pell Octet is a "concept" album and it is from the glorious 1955. The line up is stellar (especially the saxes-trumpet front line), Dave tenor, Bob Gordon bari, Don Fagerquist trumpet, Ray Sims bone, Tony Rizzi guitar, ... plus cents. I was saying it is a concept album because it's an album composed by songs that are about romantic places. The Jazz ingredient is put on the table by this precious Dave unit. The Dave Pell Octet has been in the fifties one of the best line ups for what matters West Coast Jazz. Best album by them is "I had the craziest dream" but this one is not very far. The band's music is exillarating West Coast Jazz always funny and curious, with stellar charts and solos by the guys ... here there are just few weak moments, "London in July" or "Deep in the heart of Texas" for example are a little bit boring compared to the overall happy and joyous mood of the album. But anyway, after all, it is another splendid album from the Octet, ... just a little bit behind the "Dream". The cover is "unbelievable", one of the most beautiful cover from the fifties in my humble opinion, tender and innocent, with that special patina ... thanks to Collectables Records that kept it!
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 22, 2009 2:24 AM PDT


Cruisin' Deuces
Cruisin' Deuces
Price: $10.19
73 used & new from $0.13

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So good, August 26, 2008
This review is from: Cruisin' Deuces (Audio CD)
Danny was so good it's ridicolous, he will always be in my all time favourite musicians Hall of Fame. No question. He is in very good company, with Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, all the boppers, Wes Montgomery, Edward Van Halen, Hank Garland, Sarah Vaughan, Michael Hedges, I don't know, Shawn Lane, John McLaughlin, Leo Kottke, Brian Setzer, Phineas Newborn, Bill Evans, Buddy DeFranco, Lee Morgan, Frank Rosolino, Dave Pell, Shorty Rogers, all the California boppers... gosh, many more. But Danny was something special. A killer, I own everything he recorded. Everything. This album is peculiar. It is true that probably was an attemp for him to be more "commercial", to reach a wider audience, and that the resuls are ,... fantastic at some point, ... a little weak in other points. Nevertheless I still rate 5 stars this album, just for 4 or 5 tunes that are phenomenal. With Cruisin' Deuces he tried to be more successful, but he failed. Not because the music contained here wasn't good. Simply the music Danny played in his career has never been that "commercial". That fantastic blend of styles which was HIS style, something that incorporated Jazz, blues, soul, bop, rockabilly, western swing, rock'n'roll, country, chicken picking, bluegrass and everything in between could not appeal to a large audience which, by definition, is not aware and interested enough in good music. You must be a well rounded listener (and even a player in a certain sense) of good american music, all of it, to understand and appreciate Danny at the fullest. To me here, the music really speaks for itself, and I simply want to list the tunes here that are phenomenal, a lot above the mere mortal stuff. "So good" (UN-BE-LIE-VA-BLE), "Tragedy" (SU-BLI-ME), "Harlem Nocturne", ... "Funhouse", "Sun Medley" (TER-RI-FIC), ... "Sky King", "Thirteen woman" ... and of course all the solos, every tune's guitar parts. Danny blow all of us away with just a rhythmn part! Some guys critic the vocals here. I don't know, they're not totally out of place. Maybe the choice on the singer could be more accurate, .. but that's it. That simple thing can't detract nothing of the pleasure to listen again to a PHE-NO-ME-NAL player such as Danny. All in all this is a very entertaining album ,... with some flaws in the production area probably. At the end of the day probably some albums of his are more true to Danny, and if you are a casual listener that wants to own just a couple of things by Danny I would suggest other albums ("Relentless" and "Redneck Jazz Explosion" maybe) but you can't never touch Danny. He is UNTOUCHABLE for me.


Blues in The Night
Blues in The Night

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sonny in fine form, August 26, 2008
This review is from: Blues in The Night (Audio CD)
A couple of years ago I had the opportunity to buy this rare japanese edition of this album by Sonny Clark used. I have learned that it is a little bit rare and I'm glad I have been lucky enough to put it in my collection because it's a very nice album. It's a trio session with Paul Chambers on bass. Nothing particularly hard or challenging, just a nice relaxed late fifties (58) swingin' session with exceptional musicians involved. The program is based almost exclusively on standard tunes, except maybe for "Blues in the Night" which is a slow blues (of course), and if I remember correctly (but I may be wrong, unfortunatly right now I don't have the cover under my eyes), it is an original by Sonny. The tempo of the tunes is always medium, swingin', bouncing, ... it's a very relaxing listening experience. Sonny' style here is particularly accessible, he plays boppish but very melodic and with nice tasty lines. There'a version of "Dancin' in the dark" that for me is a total delight. But "I cover the waterfront" is very beautiful too, ... and the opener, a very nice "Can't we be friends?" interpretation. Reading AMG, I have learned that this music was intended to be released for Juke Box at the time! Go figure! And still from AMG I can say to you that this same music is contained in the far more easy to find album "Standards" by Sonny. I repeat, it's a very coherent album from the beginning to the end, the tempo of the tunes stays consistent: it stays always around the medium time, with a strong swing feel. The version of "Dancin in the dark" is stellar, it always makes me dance ... in the dark of my room when I play it. Beautiful!


Ramblin'
Ramblin'
Offered by titanmusicinc
Price: $14.99
13 used & new from $10.99

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 1966. Something Personal Vol. II, August 5, 2008
This review is from: Ramblin' (Audio CD)
Another phenomenal album by a fantastic team, Jack Wilson (piano) and Roy Ayers (vibes), plus in this case, Monk Montgomery (bass) and Warner Barlow (drums). I called this review "Something Personal VOL II" because this is exactly what you will hear inside "Ramblin'". The second part of that incredible album by Jack Wilson (see my review). The same fantastic collaboration that made "Something Personal" the masterpiece it was is here too and the year is the same, 1966. Yes. These two albums have been recorded just months one from the other and you can hear that the telepathy is the same, the intention is the same and the magic is totally here too as it was in "Something Personal". Something personal was more about original material by Jack Wilson; here you will find standards instead but this fact don't make this one a minor album. It's on the same phenomenal level. There's a reharmonization in four parts of the Sandpiper which is masterpiece, something that your jazz collection absolutly needs to include! Ramblin is a minor pedal with an intriguiging rhythmn part. Stolen moments is the splendid minor blues by Oliver Nelson, Kilo an hard bop speeder, Impressions the Coltrane line over Miles Davis' "So what" is taken uptempo, Sandpiper is by Johnny Mandel, and Sidewinder the last tune is by Lee Morgan. I swear, this album will make the owner of "Something Personal" happy again. Buy "Ramblin'" my friends. Buy this one. 5 stars absolutly!!!!


Mr Roberts Plays Guitar
Mr Roberts Plays Guitar
Price: $16.89
13 used & new from $12.39

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mr Guitar, August 4, 2008
This review is from: Mr Roberts Plays Guitar (Audio CD)
Howard Roberts started his career as a recording jazzman with the first ten tunes contained in this album by Fresh Sounds. Originally it came out on Verve and it was an album full of stars in the arrangements department as in the playing roles. Bill Holman, Marty Paich, Jack Montrose, Bob Envoldsen were the arrangers while the players were Red Norvo, Pete Jolly, Bob Cooper and Alvin Stoller. What you can hear in this album are different settings, trio, quartet, quintet and string sections. The music is always interesting. Howard plays really really well in all the situations. This is a straight ahead jazz date (two different dates actually) and not an album similar to the Capitol ones that Howard recorded later on, that in my opinion are the ones that form the legacy of Mr Roberts original sounds (albums that I love so much). But this one it's really great in its own right. It shows a master at work among many other masters, ... something that does not happen anymore unfortunatly. A very good records that I suggest to all the fans of good, really good Jazz (the years are 1956/1957).


It's a Blue World
It's a Blue World
12 used & new from $19.60

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It's blue but it's very nice, August 1, 2008
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This review is from: It's a Blue World (Audio CD)
It's blue that these times are gone. This is a very beautiful Mel Tormè album from the fifties. It's an album of ballads as you may know already, or can understand by the title. I rate it five stars, in its genre it is surely a wonderful selection of tunes and Mel gives us a very strong interpretation of them. It's an album of Mel with a string orchestra so it's a "jazz" album only in this sense. It's a crooner's game. I honestly can say that I purchased this album because I fell in love with the marvellous cover (and concept) by Burt Goldblatt which was a genius to me and a poet of the camera in my opinion. But apart from the cover I found inside a very nice album for a tender evening. It's very beautiful, the repertoire, the way Mel sings the songs and take them to life. It's a dive in the past, in a very romantic era. I dig this kind of trip sometimes. Mine is the Jewel box edition, it's from 1986. No booklet at all. Just the cover. A poor edition in a sense.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 12, 2014 10:04 AM PDT


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