Kevin Mackenzie – Guitar
Phil Bancroft – Saxes
Tom Bancroft – Drums & Bodhran
Guest –Brian Finnegan – Flutes & Whistles
As an out and out jazz fan that is not at all
keen on fusion or world music, I was not expecting to like this
album very much. My reservations however were soon overcome, these
guys really do create interesting music and the jazz content is
high. Scotland has produced many fine saxophone players Tommy
Whittle, Gary Cox and Bobby Wellins spring to mind; but there
have been many others. Phil Bancroft is a very worthy addition
to that great lineage!
Kevin Mackenzie is a sensitive guitar player
with a real feeling for holding things together, as well as being
an excellent soloist. Tom Bankroft looks after the percussion
department well whether on drums or the more unusual bodhran,
which produces an almost bass-like quality at times.
Guest Brian Finnegan is a very accomplished flute
player as well as a specialist on the Celtic whistle; he also
possesses a nice jazz feel and is capable of first class improvisation.
Each member of the regular trio has contributed
one or more compositions to the album and most are refreshingly
different, creating a range of moods or musical poems. Sundance,
a Phil Bancroft original, is particularly effective with
a theme statement from Tom and some interesting backings throughout.
The sleeve note points out that in the title
Stuff Swing, stuff is not used as a verb! The track does swing
in parts and contains some other ‘stuff’ as well.
The Clock starts with Mackenzie playing a bass
line on guitar and develops into another interesting performance.
Trio AAB would make an interesting addition to
any Jazz Festival programme, their work is unusual and interesting
but not so far removed from Jazz, as we know it, to lose the audience.
The fusion of Scottish Folk music and Jazz works better than most
fusion experiments, perhaps it is the reason that Scotland produces
so many fine jazz musicians. Overall the album is an interesting
musical experience, not to be missed.