Second release from the extraordinary ensemble. Lee’s compositions kick, simmer and sing, and confirm her as a major talent of what Muhal Richard Abrams called contemporary creative music. The seamless improvisations which colored the first recording so vividly and which erased the lines dividing inside and out playing are here too. This is a must for those that enjoyed the debut.
...the real point is that if this is avant-garde jazz music , it's the kind of avant-garde jazz music anyone can love. Lee can play "out" with the best of them, and since she's one of the world's finest improvising cellists, she often does. But as a bandleader, she's more concerned with striking a balance between sonic exploration and a more traditional melodic approach, and to that end she has constructed a group that can do anything. ... Passionate virtuosity and committed versatility like this are hard to come by, but if you've got this CD you'll always have some close at hand....Alex Varty, the Georgia Straight
The Vancouver-based cellist leads a sextet through an edgy program navigating a course between 21st century jazz and avant-garde chamber music on Sounds From the Big House. The orchestrations are superb, exploring a panoply of timbres, moods and rhythmic feels.... There are some fine solos, with the leader and Berkman sounding particularly inspired. Drummer van der Schyff''s splashy, expansive percussion propels even the more abstract passages with a potent pulse, and Wilson cranks out distorted skronk one moment, post-Frisell Copland-esque Americana the next...Bill Barton, Coda
released January 1, 2002
Peggy Lee, cello
Brad Turner, trumpet and flugelhorn
Jeremy Berkman, trombone
Tony Wilson, electric guitar
Chris Tarry, bass
Dylan van der Schyff, drums, percussion, electronics, trumpet,
with guests Robin Reid, marimba and Francois Houle, clarinet
Produced by Peggy Lee and Shawn Pierce. Recorded and mixed at the Factory, Vancouver, B.C., (April 2002) by Shawn Pierce for Maximum Music.
supported by 6 fans who also own “Sounds From The Big House”
Ward's swirling, breezy sax feels very close and intimate - listening to it I pictured myself in a small basement room as the band played - but the 10 tongues paint a joyful and sophisticated urban fairytale that changes scene cinematically and builds to a satisfying finale. Tom Colquhoun