Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Listen to Samples
One of the best Jazz albums and Carla's best!
Mortrude Sluurp | Poughkeepsie, NY | 12/19/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Social Studies represents a somewhat sharp break from the humor that had accompanied Carla's previous efforts. Here the emphasis is on extended composition, stunning melody, and beautiful harmonies. Copyright Royalties, an obvious nod to Ellington, has a breathtaking solo by Tony Dagradi on clarinet. Reactionary Tango, the longest piece in the set divides neatly into 3 sections that bring out the best in the band.Bley resurrects an old tune, Floater, that appeared on a Steve Swallow album in the early 60s to great effect here. Swallow gets to strut his stuff with an intense intro and solo.Utviklingssang shines as another brillant melody and an opportunity for Dagradi to show why he remains one of Carla's best sidemen (and, with Gary Valente, the source of some of the best solos on her CDs).The set ends with the start-stop Walking Batteriewoman, just in case a small dose of humor is needed. But the humor has now been totally channeled into the composition.It doesn't get ANY better than this."
Early-Middle Period Carla Bley in Peak form!
Lyre Lyre | Juneau, AK United States | 02/27/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This album marks the finish of a decade and the culmination of one of the many stages of Carla Bley's work. Social Studies is the apotheosis of Bley's highly inspired and ingeniously assembled synergy of compositional gravity, wicked humor and perfectly calibrated chaos. There is not a wasted note in the long-form piece, and the overall conception and execution of each tune is complete, thorough and fulfilled; the raw edges of earlier work have been sublimated in service of what to me has become THE transcendent presentation of the Bley ethos. All of Bley's influences are here and are integrated on an entirely new level; Ellington, Rota, German Italian and South American dance and parlor musics, and of course earlier works deftly recast by Bley herself. A library of brilliance!"