Carla Bozulich states in the liner notes that Boy is her "pop" album. She knows the term is subjective. In her definition, the word reflects the multiple locations she wrote and recorded in, the numerous people encountered in her nomadic state of travel, and the various musical genres that can be – and often are – used to create pop. Bozulich doesn't "deconstruct" here. She uses vernacular song forms in an organic process of elocution and expression that makes something else of them while never quite emptying them of form or function. Instead, she finds the cracks that open them, and makes them bleed into others, ordered by an instinctive sense of aesthetic transgression that becomes creation. Boy was primarily written, produced, and played by Bozulich and John Eichenseer.
Austin-to-L.A. transplants the Textones were one of the few post-new wave "roots rock" bands of the mid-'80s to deserve the appellation. (Unfortunately, they're mostly remembered, if at all, only as the band Kathy Valentine left to join the Go-Go's.) Unlike the terribly overrated Lone Justice or the beer salesmen in the Long Ryders or the Del Fuegos, Carla Olson and company came off like a punkier version of the Gram Parsons-era Byrds, with a poppy edge on unexpected covers like the Searchers' "Silver" and Neil Sedaka's "Keep a Walkin'."
Gene Clark was one of the most gifted singers and songwriters of his generation, but bad luck and self-destructive habits followed him like a shadow, and it seemed sadly appropriate that he died in the spring of 1991 as he was working on a follow-up to the biggest success of his solo career, So Rebellious a Lover, his 1987 collaboration with Carla Olson of the Textones. Clark's poor health (aggravated by drinking) and fear of flying prevented a full-scale tour in support of So Rebellious a Lover, but he played scattered live dates after its release, and In Concert gathers recordings from shows Clark gave in late 1988 and early 1990.
Though Heavy Heart was supposedly the "mellow, sensual" album Carla Bley had in mind, Night-Glo is more like it – a relaxed, easygoing, easy-listening series of compositions that nearly spills over into fuzak. Writing for a basic sextet with an added five-man horn section, most effectively when one color melts gently into another, Bley permits the lazy pina-colada mood to amble undisturbed from track to track.
Andando el Tiempo features new music of wide emotional compass by Carla Bley, and underlines her originality and resourcefulness as a jazz composer. “Saints Alive!” sets up animated conversations between the participants with striking statements from Steve Swallow’s bass guitar and Andy Sheppard’s soprano sax. The stately “Naked Bridges/Diving Brides” draws inspiration from Mendelssohn and the poetry of Paul Haines. And the powerful three part title composition – which addresses the trials and tribulations of recovery from addiction - moves through sorrow to hopefulness and joy.