Rick Margitza

Game of Chance

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An excellent saxophonist, Rick Margitza sounds a bit like early-'60s John Coltrane on tenor, while on soprano his tone is closer to that of Wayne Shorter. On this quartet set from 1996, Margitza plays six of his own originals and four by pianist Jeff Gardner. The music is post-bop and ranges from driving pieces such as "Good Question" to lyrical ballads, including the memorable "Careless" and "Cidade Vazia." Other highlights include the catchy "13 Bar Blues" (which really is one bar longer than the usual 12-bar blues) and exciting versions of "Blades Run" and the hyper "No Minor Affair." The rhythm section is subtle and stimulating in support of Margitza, who is the star throughout. A fine effort.

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