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Putting aside her more customary big-band music, last year the pianist Carla Bley formed and toured with a quartet called the Lost Chords. An album, The Lost Chords, came from the European performances, and it has a slow-acting quality. Here and there it’s pleasantly eccentric on the surface, but the music contains deeper pleasures that take a little while to settle in. …
“Lost Chords,” a suite, represents its magnum opus. Built on tolling chords, the music transforms into a slow minor ballad, Mr. Sheppard gracefully picking around the chords and abstracting his lines into soft, wailing long tones. Mr. Swallow plays a guitarlike bass solo; the second part swings, with a Thelonious Monk-like unison bebop melody from piano and tenor saxophone. …
When she suppresses her wry sensibility enough that only a glimmer of it shows, as is the case for a good half of “The Lost Chords,” Ms. Bley’s sensibility stands out; she’s easily one of the best composers we’ve had in the last 40 years of jazz.
Ben Ratliff, The New York Times

When the trio was born, Bley was catapulted into the unfamiliar role of piano soloist rather than composer/arranger... Now she sounds completely at home with it, in a cryptically witty, stripped-down, Thelonious Monk-like way. In fact, this album frequently recalls the later Monk quartet recordings in its elliptical approaches to melody, the interdependence of casually scattered melodic fragments and rhythm, and the interplay of the piano and playful sax. … Billy Drummond plays superbly throughout. He is exclamatory and insistent on Hip Hop, its theme built out of blippy accents against the percussion, with Bley getting gospelly on it. He quietly whispers behind Shepard’s long, tremulous tenor tones and Swallow’s purring bass on Tropical Depression – tightly riding the cymbals on the inquisitive, slightly puzzled-sounding Red, dramatic on the more abstract, suite-like title track. Sheppard paces the story superbly, expanding his solos gradually from short, staccato figures to sweeping Rollins-like long lines. Compelling Carla Bley themes with great playing.
John Fordham, The Guardian

The Lost Chords est un disque qu’il est impossible de ne pas aimer. Il suffit de se rendre sur la plage 8 et de déguster le solo de basse de Swallow. Carla Bley n’a pas fini de nous séduire. Indispensable!
Christian Vincent, La voix du nord

Falls während Carla Bleys Europa-Tour im Oktober 2003 wirklich Akkorde verlorengingen, so haben Andy Sheppard und Steve Swallow sie mit Sicherheit wiedergefunden. Auf dieser Live-CD beflügeln die beiden mit schöne Intonation – unverkennbar Swallows singender Bass sowie Sheppards Sopran- und Tenorsax – die subtilen Stücke der Pianistin. Schlagzeuger Billy Drummond sorgt mit solidem Groove für Bodenhaftung. Rauschender Applaus.
Sven Thielmann, Stereoplay

Nach ihrem grandiosen Big-Band-Album Looking for America hat sich die Komponistin und Pianistin Carla Bley wieder der Arbeit in einer kleineren Formation zugewandt. ... Melos, analytischer Verstand und Spielwitz sind bei Carla Bley aufs Glücklichste vereint. „This album could be seen as a continuation of search, from ‚Looking’ to ‚Lost’“, schreibt sie mit der ihr eigenen Ironie. … Das Quartett spielt virtuos, doch ganz uneitel; und bei niemanden klingt der E-Bass so filigran wie bei Steve Swallow, Carla Bleys Lebenspartner.
Manfred Papst, Neue Zürcher Zeitung am Sonntag

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