At once new and endlessly referential, Average White Cats brings out the best and worst of guitarist Frank DiBussolo at nearly the same time. The album is entirely comprised of original compositions (with the exception of the classic "When You're Smiling"), but those originals themselves range in quality and originality. "Loco Linda," while enjoyable, seems directly lifted from an Art Blakey number. "Gracie and Kate" is a jazz waltz that owes more than a bit to Bill Evans' work. "Vin Dolce," on the other hand, is a straightforward bit of solo guitar with a quiet dignity that isn't taken from other works. The title track holds a similar originality, especially in the guitar lines, but adds some energy to the proceedings. It's in the improvisations that the guitar really shines here -- when DiBussolo cuts loose on a massive, bubbling run he can hint at Wes Montgomery a bit, he can hint at Charlie Christian a bit, and he can simply make his own sounds. When he does do this, rare as it might be, it's a fine sound indeed.
AllMusic Review by Adam Greenberg