News — June 2015

KEN ALDCROFT & SCOTT THOMSON – Red & Blue (Trio Records 021; Canada)

Featuring Ken Aldcroft on guitar and Scott Thomson on trombone. Toronto-based guitarist Ken Aldcroft usually sends us two or three new discs a year and plays here a couple of times a year as well. Trombonist Scott Thomson is a longtime member of Aldcroft’s Convergence Ensemble as well as a member of the Ratchet Orchestra, Jean Derome Orchestra and has a fine duo disc with Lori Freedman.

Mighty fine! There are just four pieces here, two named ‘Red” and two named “Blue”. Mr. Aldcroft has a fine semi-acoustic sound with minimal devices on the first “Red”. It sounds like these two have been playing together for a long while since they have a good deal of common ground to work with. On the first “Blue”, the duo start pushing each other further out as they go, exploring free terrain and manipulating their sounds as they go. No matter how far out they go, the duo remains tightly integrated, their playing well woven. Speeding up, slowing down but always connected somehow. This is high-end improv at its best, like a fascinating conversation between two kindred spirits as they soar through the rapids.

Bruce Lee Gallanter, Downtown Music Gallery