Szakcsi Lakatos, Bela & Lukacs, Miklos - Check It Out, Igor (piano-cimbalom Improvisations) (CD)

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The music was recorded in just eight hours, improvised from beginning to end.

Music begins where words lose their meaning and when music reaches the standard it has on this album, it's well-nigh impossible to verbalise it.
I received a rough copy of this record long before it was finalised. It had no title. All that was written on it with a felt pen were the names of the two artists: Bela Szakcsi Lakatos, arguably the greatest jazz pianist in Hungary and Miklós Lukács, the phenomenal rising young star of the cimbalom (a folk instrument not unlike the hammer dulcimer and much loved by the Gypsies of Hungary and Romania). So, what was one meant to expect? Before putting the CD on, I was wondering how on earth a piano and a cimbalom will sound together without the mediation of a solid rhythm section? Will it be Gypsy jazz? Will Szakcsi Lakatos' brilliant pianism bury the cimbalom? To be frank, I was not prepared for what I was to hear.
The music struck me as a conversation between equals, as two men were telling a long and involved story with several interesting and dramatic, frequently humorous twists to it, sometimes speaking excitedly at the same time, sometimes taking turns and sometimes embellishing the story as told by the other. Bela Szakcsi Lakatos, with the humility of the truly great artist he is, was not trying to drown the younger man out, while Miklós Lukács, the brilliant exponent of his uncommon instrument, took the cimbalom into regions where it had never ventured before. This is contemporary music of the highest order. The music is life-affirming, invigorating, thought-provoking, full of feeling and does owe its debt to jazz inasmuch as it's improvised from beginning to end, but the Hungarian and the Gypsy are also there while the influences clearly stretch from Bach to Bartók. This is a tour de force, a meeting of minds, a tremendous and unique experience. (from booklet text by Peter Pallai)

Track Listing

    • Chase away the devil
    • Game for two
    • Lukas (dedicated to Barnabas Dukay)
    • Check It Out, Igor
    • An invocation and a curse
    • Feeling tiddly
    • Autumn memories
    • Gypsy dance á l'espagnole

    Additional Details

    Label: BMC Records

    Genre: Jazz

    Run Time: 50 mins

    Release Date: 09/01/05

    UPC: 5998309301087

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