Geordie Haley's Every Time Band The Green Suite and Other Stories

Here’s a band that could hardly be accused of having a conventional line-up. Sure, four out of six members are normal enough: Haley plays electric guitar, Evan Shaw is on sax, Paul Donat plays bass, and the drums are handled by Jean Martin. However, the contributions of Eugene Martynec on laptops and Christine Duncan’s free vocalising mashes up everyone’s role from rhythm to harmony and from background to lead. Even with the modulating roles of each player, the music remains quite identifiably jazzy with an art pop edge. Shifting grooves, a ridiculously varied sonic palette created by Martynec and Duncan, and the naturalistic imagery of the lyrics are the strongest aspects of this disc. It’s a mosaic of ideas as everyone gets their glory at some point, while the leader is more of a conductor than lead soloist. When Haley does break out, he’s disappointing in that he’s a fine ensemble player, but his tone and choice of effects are not very distinctive as a lead voice alongside the greater inventiveness of the rest of the band. Evan Shaw fares very well on his lead sax parts, particularly when his excellent melodic sense is paired with Duncan’s unfettered vocals, as on "Found Above.” The Green Suite is more successful than not and there are so many little touches that it bears much repeated listening. (Independent)