Fly: Lady B
Sky & Country (ECM B0012669-02)
Composed by Jeff Ballard.
Recorded: New York, February 28-29, 2008
Rating: 89/100 (learn more)
This is very much an ensemble performance. And these guys are really serious about that. An email went out from Fly's publicist asking, basically, that reviewers not single out any of the players as taking the lead role. That being the case, I am happy to give 33.3% of the credit for the organic creation that is "Lady B" to each player. (The leftover .1% can hang there in the air. Better yet, I'll give it to the publicist.) The fact is that this performance is as described. Saxophonist Mark Turner does take a thought-provoking solo. But it is not as if bassist Larry Grenadier and drummer Jeff Ballard remain behind just to provide support. They are constantly doing interesting things of their own. Your ears might wander, perhaps even to different places every time you hear the performance. That is always a good thing. Instead of choosing a standout performer, then, I will just say that these guys are an ensemble in every sense, and as such create rewarding music.
Reviewer: Walter Kolosky