Downtown Music Gallery 2011
Toronto-based guitarist Ken Aldcroft is both a gifted musician and prolific recording artist with more than a dozen discs on his own Trio label. Ken has played here at DMG with his comrade William Parker on a few previous occasions and both musicians will be here again Sunday, November 20th. This disc is recorded in an intimate setting with a strong, warm and well-balanced sound. The first track, "One Sunday" is some 30 minutes long and it sounds like a conversation between old friends. William plays mostly bowed bass for much of this piece while Ken plays a series of slippery slowly evolving chords of his hollow-body guitar turned down low. The ideas are tossed back and forth quickly as the tempo and intensity increases. When Ken switches to single notes, he dips into a bluesier tone with William bowing profusely. Both men are connected on one level while they also weave their way around one another, moving in different waves. Both men like to push things further out, yet they always end up in a similar place no matter how far they go. Ken and William have a unique way of exploring odd melodies and then twisting them into all sorts of bent shapes. William plays something called a trombonium on "Zum Schneider", both men bending and expanding their notes in their own way. The vibe is disorienting but it still works well to put us in a new place. "Sweet Beverly" is the other long piece here and the duo take their time and play slowly, working their way through different sections. The way they answer one another and add shades or colors to each other's lines is quite special. Like telepathic communication. The dialogue is easy to follow and unfolds in a most organic way. The last piece is called "Monroe Street Bop" which is where DMG is now located. A tribute to us perhaps? Either way it is an elegant song that feels just right. We are honored either way since this duo (plus Andy Haas) will be here again in a few weeks to help celebrate the release of this great disc. Come on down if you can.