12 Songs, 1 Hour

EDITORS’ NOTES

In the early '60s, The Bill Evans Trio revolutionized the piano trio format by creating music where all three musicians played equal roles. Fly Trio—tenor saxophonist Mark Turner, bassist Larry Grenadier, and drummer Jeff Ballard—also level hierarchy to engage in peer-to-peer interaction. On their third release, Year of the Snake, they craft work that's refined and restrained but also has a subtle edge. A series of five short pieces, called “Western Lands,” punctuates the album. Each is an instance of cool, abstract beauty, and they all have a non-idiomatic quality resembling 21st-century classical composition as much as jazz. The Turner-penned title track displays a number of the band’s attractive qualities: Turner’s often-praised upper-range soundings, the trio’s unusual sense of swing, and a moment-to-moment unpredictability. “Kingston,” composed by Grenadier, starts with tenor sax and bowed bass accompanied by fractured drum and snare hits before Turner plays a cool-headed solo over a herky-jerky groove. Year of the Snake is clearly a standout of 2012.

EDITORS’ NOTES

In the early '60s, The Bill Evans Trio revolutionized the piano trio format by creating music where all three musicians played equal roles. Fly Trio—tenor saxophonist Mark Turner, bassist Larry Grenadier, and drummer Jeff Ballard—also level hierarchy to engage in peer-to-peer interaction. On their third release, Year of the Snake, they craft work that's refined and restrained but also has a subtle edge. A series of five short pieces, called “Western Lands,” punctuates the album. Each is an instance of cool, abstract beauty, and they all have a non-idiomatic quality resembling 21st-century classical composition as much as jazz. The Turner-penned title track displays a number of the band’s attractive qualities: Turner’s often-praised upper-range soundings, the trio’s unusual sense of swing, and a moment-to-moment unpredictability. “Kingston,” composed by Grenadier, starts with tenor sax and bowed bass accompanied by fractured drum and snare hits before Turner plays a cool-headed solo over a herky-jerky groove. Year of the Snake is clearly a standout of 2012.

TITLE TIME