Attention Screen

On Saturday night, in New York City, upstairs in Manhattan’s 54th Street Yamaha piano studios, which by the way is very close to that other keyboard shrine, Steinway Hall, Stereophile’s own contributing editor Bob Reina and his group, Attention Screen recorded their third live album for Stereophile Records, a label owned and run by editor in chief/sound engineer John Atkinson, our fearless leader. Just so there is no confusion, I mean that last term as an endearing salute rather than in the sense of Rocky & Bullwinkle’s Germanesque dictator of Pottsylvania.

In any case—damn those cartoon visions of life do get in the way sometimes!—Mr. Reina and his up–and–coming out jazz quartet, featuring Chris Jones on bass, Mark Flynn on drums and Don Fiorino on guitar, played a set that I felt had more intricately constructed tunes, played to the bands strengths better and generally was more upbeat and accessible than some of what I’d heard from them in the past. Look for the album on Stereophile.com in Autumn 2010. Their previous two records, Live at Merkin Hall and Live at Otto’s Shrunken Head are available at www.Stereophile.com.

This concert was also an occasion to hang with old friends of the magazine, what JA calls, “A Gathering of the Tribe.” After 14 years, I feel like one of the leading dog soldiers under Chief John, and it was fun to see and chat with partisans like Jonathan Scull and Roy Hall, not to mention the other Dog Soldier, Stephen Mejias, at the gig. Also it’s always good to see the real power behind the peace pipe, Laura Atkinson who was a massive good sport and worked the door for what ended up being a sold out house. Congrats to Bob, Chris, Mark and Don and JA! Anxious to hear the results!

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