LABELS: Label Bleu
PERFORMER: Andy Sheppard (ts, ss); Steve Lodder (kybds), Nana Vasconcelos (perc)
CATALOGUE NO: LBLC 6583 DDD
For someone whose shyness makes it difficult for him to talk onstage, Andy Sheppard is the most gregarious leader. In big bands, small groups and duos, his self-taught skills shine in almost any setting. This little outfit is the best in a while – Sheppard sounding much like Jan Garbarek might if he spent more time in the sun.
His fresh and folksy compositions are moved along con brio by the elevating mix of Lodder’s sparkling synth and Vasconcelos’s organic percussion. The leader’s mid-tempo-to-freewheeling improvisation dances across his ingenious accompaniment with careful abandon. With Inclassificable Sheppard has broken new ground for the improvising trio and made a real tonic of a disc. Garry Booth