The card effects tend to blend a bit with lots of good transpositions, color changes, torn and restores, productions and sandwich effects. I like Sankey’s “Uniquely” where a marked coin and the torn corner of a playing card change places inside an envelope. This one has strong commercial possibilities as it uses a borrowed quarter and ends clean.
In “Solo,” Sankey presents a very basic card trick that’s nicely dressed and presented, but is still a basic sleight-of-hand card trick. A selected card is lost in the deck and the magician fails to find it. In the end, the wrong card that the magician is holding turns out to be the right card. This one is great for lay people, but not the kind of material that magicians are looking for on a DVD. And it’s far below what one would expect to learn from Sankey.
Leclerc’s “Shy Guys” is an amazing and visual "Twisting the Aces" routine that is reminiscent of that fantastic and memorable routine that Guy Hollingsworth performed on the “World’s Greatest Magic” television special back in the mid-90s. This version is visual as spectators see the backs of cards just before a card turns over in front of the eyes. This one does require a simple gimmick and will take lots of work. But it’s worth it.
I particularly like Leclerc’s “I.L.U.S. System” that starts as a typical card routine but upgrades into something that takes into account the many things that magicians hear from spectators during walkaround. This routine is based on a brilliant idea that all restaurant workers will be able to use. I know that I plan to try it out as my experience with spectators is right inline with that of Leclerc’s. In “Straight From the Heart,” Leclerc offers a visual rising card from jacket pocket that may appeal to many.
Diamond is Rough
However, during his explanation, Diamond refers to his audience as “stupid lay people.” I hope that this isn’t his real attitude towards spectators who he should be entertaining and not looking down on. In magic, our spectators should never be considered “stupid.”
The effects require a strong foundation in sleight-of-hand and the explanations are generally good. In all, Underground Jam delivers on its intent, delivering a jam session among four magicians who present and explain a variety of close-up routines. With 20 effects for $25, there’s bound to be something here that you will like.
-Wayne N. Kawamoto
MSRP: (US) $25
Dealers can purchase from Murphy's Magic Supplies, Inc.