May 29, 2017
With the same feel-good buoyancy as was displayed on his My Story release last year, Swedish keyboardist Mattias Roos is back with a colorful collection of originals entitled Movin’ Up. This time, having caught the experienced ear of smooth jazz guitarist U-Nam, Roos is recording on the guitarist’s Skytown Records label – a very smart move by U-Nam.
The CD has solid, cool structure and loads of melody with the brilliance of nimble fingers tickling the ivories and the help of U-Nam’s production and guitar skills on certain tracks, along with an appearance by saxman Elan Trotman on a couple of tracks.
On many tracks, there’s a certain peppy cadence that complements the wickedly sassy groove. Such is the case with such tracks as “Take It Higher,” “Midnight Drive,” “From Me to You,” “Touch the Sky,” and “Sunset View.” The romance of the very seductive “Just Between Us” featuring Trotman’s sax and the mid-tempo stride of the saucy “You’re My Everything” and “Stay For a While” certainly help to round out this very complete album of smooth jazz aural pleasantries.
Hearing Roos’ last effort gave my intuition a strong sign that we would not be hearing the last of this young man with an impressive compositional talent and an apparent ear for great tone, balance, and an effective vibe. I obviously wasn’t wrong. That someone as polished as U–Nam would also pick up on the promise of Roos served as further validation of my prediction, I’m happy to say. A complete package such as this is, after all, pretty hard to miss or ignore.
Roos is another of those artists I believe will ensure that the baton of smooth jazz in years to come will not be dropped but carried on confidently and with the same poise, dignity, and cool to which it’s been accustomed. Keep bringing it, brother Mattias! – Ronald Jackson