|Reviews for the CD Island To Island:
|Write-up by Dr Mike on Radioiojazz.com:
... After previewing a larger than normal stack of cd's that came into the studio this week, none stood out more than one
submitted by an independent artist... I had my first listen to saxophonist Greg Lyons “Island to Island” and the decision was
clear... this work would be shared with jazz fans all over the world... and thus, became this weeks featured album on
... Greg is currently operating out of South East Asia and will be touring in the UK and parts of Europe in march and April 2006
in a quintet co-led by British trumpeter Damon brown. in an email this week from Malaysia, greg informed me that he is
finalizing his next album. Until then, feast your ears on the tracks of “Island to Island”...
... this album features Greg Lyons (saxophones), Mei Sheum (piano and synthesisers), Christy smith (acoustic bass), Lewis
Pragasam (drums), and Steve Thornton (percussion). all music composed and arranged by Lyons, this is his first recording
as a leader and was originally released in 2002...
... You will want to visit Greg Lyons web page to find out more details, tour information, and join the mailing list...
...Email Greg at firstname.lastname@example.org to let him know you are enjoying his music. Be sure to tell him that you heard it on
... Greg Lyons and 'island to island' ... this week's featured album on radioioJAZZ..
|Review on CD Baby.com
Reviewer: Rob Hughes
"Great album, melodic compositions that really groove and say something. Fantastic band, Lyons has an unique tenor sound
quite with a very strong technique, the blend really works. Keep it up dude."
|Review on Jazzreview.com:
British saxophonist Greg Lyons released “Island to Island” a creation that deserves a manner of comments.
London City will remember Greg for his Latin-jazz fusion compositions of the 80’s but Lyon’s capacity to mix up ethnic
Caribbean, Brazilian, blues, rock and jazz rhythms impress greatly and is known throughout the world.
A fine improviser, Lyons has also mastered Asian rhythms. He performs with Toninho Horta, Nana Vasconcelos, Billy
Cobham, John Etheridge, Alfredo Rodriguez, Patato Valdez, Loose Tubes, Grand Union, Radio Futura, Roberto Pla, Phil
Manzanera, Terumasa Hino, Bebo Valdes, Eric Marienthal, Phil Perry among many others. In “Island to Island,” Greg Lyon
introduces us to highly skilled Southeast Asian musicians.
Mei Sheum is one of Singapore's great jazz musicians. Sheum is a fine pianist who has shared the stage with Kit Chan, David
Pomeranz, Keiko Lee, Francis Yip, William So, Andy Hui, Wynton Marsalis, Ernie Watts, Eric Marenthal, Jim McNeely,
Mark Levine and Hal Galper.
The force of her piano statement is astonishing. Mei Sheum dares the improvisational territory with grace and professionalism.
Sheum's self-confidence is vital track after track. This lady grooves like hell and respects the traditional forms with a unique
Percussionist Steve Thornton, a Brooklyn native who now lives in Malaysia, has a heart of gold and delights us with an
exceptional ability with his persistent drums on “Island To Island” and the subliminal “Child of The Forest.”
Bassist Christy Smith ties the band together with his lyrical combinations and joyful vocal expressions. Drummer Lewis
Pragasam is recognized worldwide for his capacity to blend all kinds of cultural voices, also considered 'one of the finest
drummers in the world' by Sabian Cymbals (Canada) and 'the essence of the World Music combination of Southeast Asia and
the West' by Percussive Notes Magazine (USA). Lewis Pragasam imposes layers of rugged drums and wavering voices.
The end result is a mixture of beats and free jazz with Latin-like percussions, all covered in enormous amounts of freedom with
the whole serving as his setting.
“Island To Island” brings us to high combinations, an array of chords with tempestuous passages…Is this the reason why this
album is worthy now and again?
Tracks: Hermeto's Lunch Box, Summer Arrival, Out From The Shadows, Waltz For June, Suraya, Heart Of Stone, Island To
Island, Child Of The Forest
Reviewed by: Dr. Ana Isabel Ordonez
|New Straits Times 4th January 2004 - Shamini Darshni
The album is delightful.
My favourite must be the last track - Child of the Forest - which opens with a gentle piano solo, followed by the awesome Lewis
Pragasam on drums then introducing the soprano sax.
Lyons enters the piece beautifully, laying down each note on a sentimental wave. The piano is given much prominence in this
piece and Mei Sheum's superb talent on the keys is a delight to listen to.
Another track that stands out is Out from the Shadows - the theme is catchy especially with Sheum's artful backing on oiano
and the synthesiser solo, later blending with Lyons' tenor sax. All the while, keyboards (Mac Chew guests) provide a strong
underlying tone which seems the crux of the piece. The ensemble later builds up to a sensual climax and pronounces a grand
Lyons shines on title track Island to Island. The classy piece allows for the other musicians to take over from the dominant
instrument, showing off their remarkable skill which all blend to display a great piece of art.
Other notable tracks on the album are Summer Arrival, which sets an upbeat mood, and Hermeto's Lunch Box, another
fast-paced number which carries a strong recurrent theme backed by the piano, which at certain points echos this theme. The
drums make their presence felt in this piece with masculine beats.
To describe Lewis Pragsam as talented is an understatement. His outstanding playing is another reason to get this album.
Island to Island is exciting, sophisticated, beautiful and as sexy as jazz itself.