Geordie Haley's Sea of Song Trio Blue Boat

Accomplished Toronto guitarist Geordie Haley leads bassist Rob Clutton and drummer Brandon Valdivia through a heady array of eclectic compositions and improvisation. For every hint of trad jazz, there’s wondrous freedom in this masterful trio’s playing that leads to some intense and exhilarating performances. A tribute to Canadian blues legend Dutch Mason, "Dutch” is a fiery display, with Haley’s thick, resonant tone augmenting the emotive guitar wailing, which blasts against the charged-up rhythm section. There’s a little bit of country floating within Blue Boat but it surfaces briefly before being submerged beneath more experimental fare. Though subtle, "Crashed Tanker” is such a piece, while "No Parsing” steps right up with its mournful slide guitar and finger picking, which Clutton and Valdivia nuzzle up to, gently ushering the song elsewhere. Myriad styles and avenues make Blue Boat an intriguingly open affair. (Verge)