Attisound Black Mamba Brass Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece Review

Today, I am reviewing a mouthpiece made by Carlo Atti in Italy.  I had never heard of Attisound mouthpieces but Carlo contacted me last year and asked if I would be interested in reviewing some of his mouthpieces on my site.  I was curious after looking at some pictures and agreed to try them out.  He sent me a package with various sample mouthpieces to try.   The first mouthpiece to be reviewed  is an Attisound “Black Mamba” brass tenor saxophone mouthpiece (I say “Black Mambo” in the sound clip but it is “Mamba”).

Attisound Black Mamba Brass Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece

The Attisound mouthpieces that I received were a mix of various tenor mouthpieces, an alto mouthpiece and a soprano mouthpiece.  I received two Black Mamba tenor sax mouthpieces both of which are 8* tip openings and have the same design.  One is this brass mouthpiece I am reviewing and the other is black aluminum which I will be reviewing shortly.

The Attisound Black Mamba tenor mouthpiece looks well made and plays great for me.  I have to admit that at first,  I had what I call “switching to a high baffle mouthpiece syndrome”.  I have written about this before but basically I encounter it when ever I make an abrupt switch from a low baffle large chamber mouthpiece to a high baffle small chamber mouthpiece.  I find that when I first switch from low baffle to high my tone sounds thin and super edgy and bright.  I’ve learned not to make snap judgements as it takes me some time to acclimate to the new mouthpiece and settle in with it.   As I play I tend to make small adjustments with embouchure, air and throat voicing to fatten the tone and adapt it to what I hear in my head. Which I feel like I did after a few hours of playing on the Black Mamba…………

Attisound Black Mamba Brass Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece

The tip and rails of the Attisound Black Mamba don’t look particularly thin but they aren’t as wide as I have seen on other mouthpieces either.  My Rigotti and  Vandoren Java reeds matched perfectly with the tip curve of the mouthpiece which I always like. Every reed that I tried on all the Attisound mouthpieces sent got suction and retained it also.  That coupled with the fact that the mouthpieces played well for me makes me think that Carlos knows what he is doing when it comes to the facing curve.

Attisound Black Mamba Brass Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece

The Attisound mouthpiece came with a Attisound ligature that could be used on all the tenor mouthpieces.  You can see the ligature in the pictures towards the bottom of the page.  The ligature is made out of stainless steel and fits the tenor mouthpieces perfectly.  My only complaint about the ligature is that it fits the mouthpiece body so exactly that you have to be very careful putting it on.  (I have double vision which doesn’t help me with that either…….). I accidentally shaved off a corner of a reed with it when putting it on.  Later, I found I could slide the ligature on more safely at a slight angle but then found that I was scratching one side of the brass mouthpiece with an edge of the stainless steel ligature.  I finally figured out that it was easier to leave the ligature on the mouthpiece, loosen it and slide the butt end of the reed underneath.  This was much easier for me.

I really liked the ligature although I would like to see some lines designed into the screw you tighten so you can get more of a grip on the screw and it is not as smooth.  I will say that the way the ligature is tightened by the screw on top works so well that it is hard to know how tight the ligature is on the reed.  At first I was tightening down the screw until it wouldn’t tighten anymore but soon realized that I was way over tightening the ligature.   With a few turns to loosen it the reed was still held on firmly and it improved the response of the reed greatly.

Attisound Black Mamba Brass Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece

The Black Mamba has what I would consider a medium high baffle.  It shoots down from the tip in almost a straight line until it reaches the small chamber which has a scooped out entrance to the chamber.  You see these scooped out chambers in Berg Larsen mouthpiece quite often. These chambers are also commonly called “bullet” chambers.

Attisound Black Mamba Brass Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece

I tried both Rigotti Gold as well as Vandoren Java reeds on the Black Mamba but there was something about the Java reeds that I just liked more than the Rigottis.   Rigotti reeds can sometimes be overly edgy for me on certain shorter facing curves and on the Attisound tenor mouthpieces I found that as well.  On one of my other Attisound mouthpiece reviews I will also post a clip with a Rigotti reed so you can hear what that sounds like also in comparison.

While listening to the sound clip you can hear how bright, edgy and focused the Black Mamba can get even in the first few seconds.  I recorded one clip but added a bit of reverb on the second clip so you can hear how that sounds also.

The intonation was great on the Black Mamba with nothing unusual to report.  Played at full blast I felt like it got a bit of a Lenny Picket vibe going to it.   Altissimo was really easy to get as would be expected on a higher baffled piece.  I felt like the whole range of the horn was smooth and even. Certain notes could easily be overblown when playing full blast which is a common rock sax affect (Ex. 1:33 in the clip……..).

Attisound Black Mamba Brass Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece

I think the Black Mamba would be a great rock n’ roll, funk or blues sax tone if you like that bright edgier sound when soloing.  It can be dialed back a bit with less air and subtone on the lower notes also (Ex. 2:48  and 3:16 in the clip….).  Obviously, you have to have a preference for this brighter edgier tone at loud volumes but if you are into that scene then this could be a good mouthpiece to check out………

Attisound Black Mamba Brass Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece

You can contact Carlo Atti on his website at www.attisoundmouthpiece.com.  I will be reviewing some of his other models shortly the black aluminum Black Mamba.  Tell him Steve sent you………….Great work Carlo!!

Let me know what you think in the comments below. Thanks, Steve

Also check out this Attisound video which is totally cool!

Attisound Black Mamba Brass Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece-Dry No Reverb

Attisound Black Mamba Brass Tenor Saxophone Mouthpiece-Reverb

Disclosure: I received the sample mouthpiece mentioned above for free in the hope that I would try it and perhaps review it on my blog. Regardless, I only review mouthpieces and other saxophone related products that I enjoy and believe will be a good choice for other saxophone players to try also.    Steve Neff
Share : Share on FacebookShare on TwitterShare on GooglePlusShare on LinkedinShare on Pinterest
Steve About Steve

Steve Neff has been playing and teaching saxophone and jazz improvisation around the New England area for the last 25 years. He is the author of many effective jazz improvisation methods as well as founding the popular jazz video lesson site Neffmusic.com.

Speak Your Mind

*

Visit us on FacebookVisit us on TwitterVisit us on YouTubeVisit us on GooglePlusVisit us on Linkedin