Some marvelous compositions mark this fine recording of the Carlo Ceriani Septet, an Italian combo that performs the compositions of the leader/guitarist with disarming charm and technical discipline. The rather traditional instrumentation of trumpet, trombone, and saxophone, backed by rhythm, is undermined only by the addition of the leader's guitar and the substitution of the Fender piano. The latter gives the music a somewhat dated feel, although it generally has a sophisticated quality that seems to span genres, at least some of the more conventional ones. Gianluca Petrella's trombone is a pleasant surprise, as his fluid style adds a unique individuality (Davide Ielmini says it "flourishes of real poetry" in the liners) that blends nicely with Kyle Gregory's earthy trumpet. There are moments of highly inspired playing among the horns that unfortunately are not maintained throughout. Still, this is an exciting group that offers enough rewarding moments to recommend it.
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