SOLO TROMBONE CD REVIEW

Brian Allen Solo Trombone
from the (musings) website:
http://www.geocities.com/soho/square/6100/jgmtba.htm
by Richard Cochrane

Allen's self-released CD-R may be less high profile, but if reveals a lesser know talent who
may do bigger things.  He's something like an old-fashioned pit-orchestra trombonist, fond of
slapstick effects and noises; he weaves them into a music which owes at least as much to
brass band and folk music as it does to jazz.

The twenty tracks are mainly short expositions of ideas.  Allen's technique isn't entirely
secure but then people who go in search of this sort of record don't expect perfection, and in
fact, the very quality of slight shakiness adds to the down-home feel.  One hopes this isn't
patronising.  Allen has a genuine love of the less prestigious traditions of his instrument, and
that's what gives this recording much of its character.

There are some real moments of musical imagination here, too; in the punningly-titled "Berne
Baby Berne," he takes a mournful, descending melody which could come from a spiritual or
colliery band and passes it through a series of perfectly logical transformations, and
achievement which points, perhaps, to deeper things beyond the frankly very enjoyable fun
and games.
home