Released at the end of November The Space Between, is the second album by guitarists Stuart McCallum and Mike Walker. There’s a warmth to the recording that makes it perfect for an autumn release.
Largely original compositions that suit both players, the album features the great Alfie (Bacharach/David), a Debussy string quartet and My Ideal (Chase/Rubin/Whiting). The latter is a very different version of the song, compared to the Sonny Rollins classic version, with singer Earl Coleman. It is the Alfie rendition which stands out on this album. It’s a lovely song, performed beautifully. This is how to take a jazz standard and make it your own.
The addition of a string quartet brings variety to the album and McCallum’s combination of acoustic guitar with electronics, alongside Walker’s electric guitar works as a strong duo in the remainder of the tracks.
The Space Between is a deserving title for the album, as the track itself encapsulates some of the best composition and playing of the duo and includes the string quartet. Beautiful string playing is at times in unison with the guitars and elsewhere echoing lines and the track fades beautiful into the space. It sums up the beautiful playing of McCallum and Walker that make this a lovely autumnal album.
Review: Hilary Robertson