Don’t you just love it when you’re panning for gold and some gold stays in your pan after the silt drains away? A long time muso with a dual love for his trombone and electronics finds a way to merge the two into sounds for tomorrow where it’s not just creativity to show mom that you can do it with no hands. A moldy fig pleaser? Hmm, probably not. A winner for those with open minds even if they aren’t left leaning? Count on it. As influenced by Ken Nordine as well as any of the bone masters, Lake would seem to have too many miles under his belt to lead the way to tomorrow---but he’s on a quest. Killer stuff for those looking toward tomorrow to really appreciate.
- Midwest Record
Exquisite playing and beautifully crafted arrangements make the Roads Less Traveled a must take musical journey. Michael Lake’s virtuosic alto trombone playing is worth the price of admission alone, as is Gerry Pagano’s rock solid bass trombone performance, but together it’s a match made in heaven. Bravo Michael and Gerry.
- Michael Davis
Lake keeps his trombone as the focal voice on the recording, with the synths adding decorative frills and embellishments. He has studied with George Lewis, Anthony Braxton, Roscoe Mitchell, and other members from the Art Ensemble of Chicago. His experience as a live performer exposed him to a variety of settings playing mainly jazz and Latin music with notables like Lalo Rodriguez and Frankie Ruiz. For several years, he was Ray Barretto’s trombonist. Lake’s balance between artificial ringlets and acoustic waves make for an intriguing jaunt.
- Susan Frances, Blogcritics