Monday, October 30, 2006

Carla Bley - Big Band Theory (1993)

Trumpets: Lew Soloff, Guy Barker, Claude Deppa, Steve Waterman
Trombones: Gary Valente, Richard Edwards, Annie Whitehead, Ashley Slayter
Winds: Roger Jannotta, Wolfgang Puschnig, Andy Sheppard, Pete Hurt, Julian Arguelles
Rhythm: Steve Swallow (bass), Carla Bley (piano), Karen Mantler (organ), Dennis Mackrel(drums), Don Alias (percusson)

1. On the Stages in Cages
2. Birds of Parardise
3. Goodbye Porkpie Hat
4. Fresh Impression

"Carla Bley's big-band theory is put into fine practice on this recording with her characteristically stacked and tight lineup of British, European, and American players. English saxophonist Andy Sheppard, also a member of George Russell's idiosyncratic large ensemble, is the most prominent soloist. He teases, flips, and warps the tunes with vigor and feeling. He has chops to burn but a delicate touch, too. Also featured are trombonist Gary Valente, trumpeter Lew Soloff, and altoist-flutist Wolfgang Puschnig. A special, surprising guest is violinist Alex Balanescu, whose hip new-music quartet was, at this time (1993), winning notice. The whole band sparkles and lends just the right dosage of swagger and cheek where needed. The cover of Charles Mingus's "Goodbye, Pork Pie Hat" does honor to the tune. The album is, overall, among the Bley big band's finest."

1 comment:

six-by-six said...