Ben Stolorow and Ian Carey
Duocracy
Kabocha Records ***1/2

More traditionally minded on the surface at least than Roads and Codes last year’s Ian Carey Quintet + 1 outing, Duocracy opens with ‘Little White Lies’ the Walter Donaldson song from 1930 that Paul McCartney has mentioned was a childhood favourite of John Lennon’s.

Trumpeter Carey, who’s in his late thirties and is from New York state, teams here with NYC-born pianist Ben Stolorow a few years his junior who debuted in 2008 with I’ll Be Over Here and whose input gives the album its deceptively early jazz feel. Carey has width and expressive resource in his approach, Stolorow too, and while Roads and Codes found Carey more in Dave Douglas-land here the trumpet stylings are far more mainstream, for instance the sound of Ruby Braff springs to mind a bit, and I suppose Stolorow could be compared to the late Dave McKenna in that his style borders on stride but never quite goes the full furlong as that would be just too retro.

Other songs here on an easy going set recorded in the summer of 2013 on the west coast include Gigi Gryce’s ‘Social Call’ (you’ll find it on the altoist’s 1955 album When Farmer Met Gryce), Monk’s ‘Four in One’, and most interestingly Gordon Jenkins’ ‘Goodbye’, the 1930s song later closely identified with the Benny Goodman orchestra and now hardly ever covered although Carey knows it from Sinatra’s version (it's on 1958’s Only the Lonely).

Stolorow preferred Cannonball Adderley and Bill Evans' later version (from their 1961 Riverside album Know What I Mean).

Ultimately whatever the way in to the song, and the same applies for the album as a whole, while Stolorow and Carey play their own particular blend of goodbye, jazz fans may well prefer a firm hello to this appealing duo. SG

Released on 25 February