5x JUNO (Canada’s Grammy equivalent) nominee and 7x Canadian Folk Music Award winning mando-maestro Andrew Collins and his fellow Trio string-meisters just borrowed a page from basic carpentry, hitting the nail on the head with their new, double disc (1 all instrumentals, the other all w/ vocals), cleverly called “Tongue & Groove”.
You may already know the wildly exploratory Andrew Collins through his work with The Foggy Hogtown Boys, the equally mind-bending Creaking Tree String Quartet or the Trio, itself – but you’ll never put a label on him for his approach to folk, newgrass, jazz and even some chamber-oriented roots music. Showcasing a dizzying number of styles and instruments on stage, Collins and Co. appear to live by the old adage, “idle hands are the devil’s workshop”, likely keeping them just ahead of his grasp. Bending and blending genres, these musical shape shifters land somewhere between the re-imagined worlds of Béla Fleck and Newgrass invader, David Grisman.
Andrew’s skills on mandolin, fiddle, guitar, mandola, mandocello and smooth vocals merge with the rich talents of his trio mates Mike Mezzatesta (guitar, mandolin, fiddle, mandola) and James McEleney (bass, mandocello and vocals) and represent a back-to-basics visitation on what the band does best — spontaneity of the stage and rapid-fire, improvisational exchanges.