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Martin Taylor's star rose considerably during the 1990s with a flurry of recording activity as a leader, especially dates such this one from the series he did for the Scottish label Linn. With a rhythm section of pianist David Newton, bassist Brian Shiels, and drummer John Rae, the guitarist's programme is wide-ranging and has some surprises. Taylor wrote a pair of originals: The opener, '73 Berkeley Street', at first gives the impression of being a groove tune until the quartet launches into a brisk bop setting, and his 'Angel's Camp' has a rhythm & blues flavor with a touch of gospel. Country great Eddy Arnold's 'You Don't Know Me' has been covered by a few jazz musicians, but Taylor's bluesy guitar and Newton's soulful piano make this extended performance a treat. Taylor overdubbed a second guitar on his otherwise unaccompanied treatment of Ike Isaacs' snappy 'After Hours', and he's truly solo on a soft lyrical take of Hoagy Carmichael's timeless 'I Get Along Without You Very Well'. This recommended CD is well worth acquiring.

© Ken Bryden