Yoko Ono - Fly
There is a certain type of resentment associated with Yoko Ono. It doesn't help that her name is synonymous with the dissolution of one of the most revered pop groups in the history of modern music. As time has gone on, it seems that her artistic integrity has become increasingly valued but upon the release of her second album, Fly in 1971, it’s safe to say that most of the world was against her and her artistic vision. Her voice has served both as her instrument of choice and her best weapon. On Fly she would pick up where she left off with her avant noise-rock masterpiece album, PLASTIC ONO BAND, while laying the groundwork for her subversive approach to more conventional forms of music.
Her co-pilot on Fly is none other than her husband and ex-Beatle, John Lennon. His influence and participation cannot be understated. For what Yoko achieves in theory, John is able to execute in practice particularly on the first half of this double LP. It's also quite clear that John was delighted to do anything to counter his musical legacy, and that enthusiasm is evident on Fly as much as it is on PLASTIC ONO BAND. The difference is that Fly feels more premeditated, whereas PLASTIC ONO BAND feels spontaneous. This is an experimental album in every sense of the term but on the first two sides, Yoko and John experiment within the rock form. Sides 3 and 4 are when things get really out there largely due to Yoko's collaboration with the Joe Jones Tone Deaf Music Co. As explained in the liner notes, The Joe Jones Tone Deaf Music Co. is the moniker given to fluxus musician Joe Jones and his orchestra of automatic instruments. Designed for Yoko's use, these instruments would create their own sounds at the flick of a switch, and in tandem with the powerhouse that is the voice of Yoko Ono, it makes for extreme avant satisfaction. You will be hard pressed to find anything more uncomfortable and aggressive than the 22+ minute title track devoted entirely to side 4. It is truly an endurance test that sits easily next to any declared master of the avant-garde.
Yoko Ono will forever be a divisive subject in record stores for the rest of time, just as she has been ever since she first hit the scene. Love her or hate her, it’s impossible to deny that such a reputation comes only from just cause, and Fly is a testament to that cause. And it sounds as potent as ever. (Adam)
Check out a track here.