Editor's Corner, Whole Note Magazine, November 2011 (on-line)
Simultaneous with the release of “Hat and Beard” Ken Aldcroft – a very active participant in Toronto’s avant-jazz scene and co-founder of the Association of Improvising Musicians – released Home: Solo Guitar Compositions (Trio Records TRP-SS02-012). I approached this disc with some trepidation, assuming that an entire album of solo electric guitar works by a single composer would wear a little thin after a while. Of course an electric guitar can produce an almost infinite variety of sounds with the extensions and manipulations available today. I was therefore doubly surprised to find that Aldcroft held my attention throughout the near hour-long excursion, and that he did so without the obvious use of pedals and other devices so commonly seen at the feet of guitarists. Oh he certainly uses some extended playing techniques, but one gets the impression these are all achieved through dextral facility rather than electronic means. There aren’t any tunes you’ll go away whistling here, but some surprising sonorities in the exploration of the possibilities inherent in the six strings of Aldcroft’s instrument.