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Szilárd Mezei Wind Quartet - Innen

Massimo Ricci, Touching Extremes

Second release by this quartet after We Were Watching The Rain on Leo, the members of the group being leader Mezei (viola), Bogdan Rankovic (alto sax, bass clarinet, clarinet), Branislav Aksin (trombone) and Kornél Pápista (tuba). Let me be blunt: I smile bitterly when reading – not in just one, but two reviews to be found on the web – that this record is “too long”. One thing is having nothing to say and stretching useless things as far as an artistic nonentity can; another is the ability of offering scores whose balance between articulation, formal structure and improvisation is often next to ideal, their lengthy span absolutely justified. The lucid subdivision of roles applied by Mezei ensures that every line getting played makes sense; acknowledging the unevenness of moods – sparkling and bubbling to deadly solemn, conspicuous tightness to slight disorder – is the key for entering this percussion-less universe enjoying a gorgeous instrumental fluency (which, in a world where a record is usually reviewed without actually listening, probably while posting Facebook bullshit on an iPhone, is not a given). Whenever trained musicians manage to give an idea of stylistic agnosticism as these men do – never giving up to the lust of imitation, always respecting what was meant by the composer and still adding their personality as an ingredient – even what appears as a pre-constituted order results as a small yet significant revolution. Indubitably, this music is not something devised to please the average fan, however it’s equally obvious that there’s some serious foot-tapping to be performed if the briskiness of certain vamps affects your attitude. Use a measure of perseverance in approaching Innen and a whole lot of tiny treasures will eventually materialize.