Don Scott Out of Line

Guitarist/composer Don Scott has got to be grinning; he’s assembled a killer band, gotten his tunes beautifully recorded and released a CD that’s going to get him positive reviews and duly noticed. His pieces are highly listenable while still containing those prickly bits that make you go, "What was that?” Anchored by the ever-punchy lines of bassist Michael Herring, the tunes tend to the comfortable mid-tempo range, allowing all the players to think, not just wiggle their fingers and hope for the best. "Sudden Valley/Precarious Contraptions” represents the album well, featuring a knotty melody, crisp, creative drumming from Nick Fraser, cleanly articulated guitar and the thrust-and-jab sax of Quinsin Nachoff. The latter’s tone is wonderfully astringent — dry, acerbic, hard — and his solos are staggeringly diverse, with no two the same, utterly unafraid to take chances. If there is any area needing expansion, it might be leader Scott’s need to let his "inner animal” out; his playing could encompass some rougher edges. Out of Line is a CD well worth tracking down and listening to often. (Feast Your Ears)