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Bebop Spoken There

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Friday, June 28, 2019

CD Review: Mikael Mani Trio - Bobby


Mikael Mani Asmundsson (guitar); Skuli Sverrison (bass); Magnus Trygvason Eliassen (drums and vibraphone); David Daviddson (vibraphone track 9).
(Review by Steve T)

Any jazz musician knows they have a limited audience. Anybody who's played with Miles or with somebody who's played with Miles, can maybe add a nought to their sales. Guitarists also have a bit of an advantage, as guitarists - of which there are many - don't observe the usual musical boundaries.

It can also help if you can draw on another cultural community like football, cars, the Beatles - chess?

We'll never know, had I not known in advance that this was about a famous chess game in Iceland, whether the music would have evoked thoughts of that particular beautiful game or that particular landscape, with its mountains coming out of the sky and standing there. The musicians are Icelandic and the connection with a country I studied during year one of my degree could have been a conduit to get me into it, but wasn't.

None of this tells us much about the music, which is fine. He's a great guitarist with a great sound and great technique, and there's nothing wrong with it, though they may have preferred me to hate it. Apparently, there's vibraphone on the album, which I missed during the three occasions I played it, but I'll have to take their word for it.   
Steve T.

4 comments :

Lance said...

En passant, the chess match that inspired the album was the 1972 World Championship held in Iceland where the American Bobby Fischer defeated the Russian Boris Spassky, over a series of games, 12½ - 8½. The match held the world enthralled and resulted in books, movies and now an album as a reminder of that summer when, overnight, everyone was for a time a chess aficionado and no doubt the game inspired a few potential Grandmasters!

Patti said...

Maybe Grandmaster Flash even?? He of the famous White Lines ditty ......

Steve T said...

Thanks Lance, but still not getting it.

Lance said...

One of the reasons I remember the event was because, at the time, I was with the Newcastle Big Band in San Sebastian and even the Spanish papers were reporting it and Charlie Carmichael and I were also into chess. I could beat him at chess but when it came to tenor playing he was the knight and I a mere pawn (neither of us, however, were bishops on that gig!)

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