Cheryl Pyle, flautist, can be increasingly found around New York wherever free-form music is being made. Her flute has been gracing a number of sessions I have heard about. She often plays in fleet bursts and has a vibrant tone. Today we look at a recent self-released album of hers, Soul Dust. It's a trio with Cheryl on flute, doubling on electric bass, Max Ridgway playing some nice flowing guitar lines and overdubbing an interesting acoustic bass part much of the time, and Randall Colbourne on a slinky, free-form, swinging set of drums.
There are some nice jams and a few more composed sequences. What is striking is the way Cheryl will sometimes worry and do variations on a short motive or related set of them. In those cases she is more spontaneously composing than freebopping.
From first to last this is a group that sounds well together and takes full advantage of the contrasts between Cheryl's ravishing tone, long lines and phrasing bursts, Max's single-line pointillism and chordal thrusts, and Randall's effectively busy, quietly churning drums.
It is a vivid picture of three promising musicians frozen in a point of time. It is music that is free," tonal and mellow. I think even people who don't ordinarily go for the free-er echelons of improvisatory music will appreciate this one. Cheryl does not emerge fully formed (as from the head of Medusa) but is a work in progress. Very promising. And very interesting music.