Review by Grego Applegate Edwards, Cadence
April May June 2010

Next is some more contemporary Improv (3) with Ken Aldcroft's abstracted electric guitar joining a front line of compatible players—Shaw's alto, Rampersaud's trumpet and Thomson's trombone. Aldcroft has been rather prolific with his releases of late and this one does not show any tell-tale signs of over-production. It's the sort of spontaneous collective improvisation that has roots in the European pioneers of the '60s and '70s with the sort of American eclecticism of multiple direct stylistic references. Neal's bass and Sorbara's drums become more or less equal partners in the overall dialog at times; at other times they function as the rhythm section proper, like when "Our Hospitality" evolves into a Rock-Funk-out groove. They cover a lot of ground and drop into ensemble written passages (that are interesting and not especially derivative) with seamless ease, such as "Study in/Directions IV". No one soloist predominates; often collective forays are the case, but all three front linemen have fluency and eloquence in the idiomatics of the genre.

All in all this is a good effort and shows Aldcroft in a complimentary light as performer, leader and composer of line and textural perspective. It's out but more contrapuntally diverse than energetically hard edged. It's a fine listen and presages much if Ken and his ensemble can continue to gel and evolve from this promising point in time.