How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
The music on saxophonist Bill Evans' Dragonfly plays like the sum total of his experiences distilled into a single disc. Evans has spent more than three decades playing with the cream of the crop, including jazz heavyweights like trumpeter Miles Davis
, and all of these experiences play a part in the stylistic diversity that's at play on Dragonfly.
His self-made "soulgrass" sound, which fuses rock, jam band ideals and jazz esthetics, with hints of fusion, roots music and funk thrown into the mix, isn't for those who prefer their styles squarely sorted out. It is, however, a gateway sound for those who aren't comfortable fully immersing themselves in certain musical waters without feeling the temperature with their toes first.
This record, which has a rock attitude from start to finish, contains something for everybody. The aggressive "Madman" is a testosterone-fueled rocker that features some laser-like guitar soloing from Mitch Stein
's catalog. Evans' high-energy playing is ever-present on this outing, but he truly outdoes himself on "Time" and "Kings And Queens." He seems to constantly live in the moment and he's capable of spitting out endless ideas at race pace.