If a musical chain is as strong as the weakest link this is one tight unit. With a stellar 4tet made up of Julius Tolentino on alto saxophone along with organ phenom Jared Gold and Quincy Davis on drums we have but another funk infused soulful jazz outing from David Gibson. End Of The Tunnel may be the perfect bookend to A Little Somethin' (Posi-Tone, 2009). This formidable 4tet is beginning to take on that classic working band feel from the mid 1960's with Gibson's buoyant swing leading the charge.
Gold is an absolute standout on End Of The Tunnel serving as the perfect musical counterpoint for Gibson. As solid a release as you can find from Gibson or in the Posi-Tone discography there is soulful quality, an innate sound from the inner reaches of a musician that go well past playing from the heart. The cohesion between Gold and Gibson is nothing short of inspiring, especially on the more soulful tune "Preachin'" which is a Jared Gold original. The variety that embodies this release is deceptively subtle with the Herbie Hancock tune "Blind Man, Blind Man" kicking things off which may be one of the best examples of what some refer to as soul-jazz. Closing with a nice layer of texture to this outing is the Jackie McLean tune "Blue Rondo" which showcases the straight ahead lyrical swing of Davis. One of the more infectious pieces featured from Gibson is funk oriented tune "Wasabi" where again Gold is the musical yin to Gibson's yang. Musical brothers from a different mother.
David Gibson is the living embodiment of the searching artist. Does he reinvent the musical wheel here? No...He does not have to but instead takes a soulful sound most musicians could work a career trying to find and he simply pushes the music forward with a quartet that is as tight as they come. David Gibson gives a masterclass in performance on End Of The Tunnel and proves despite reports of its demise that real swing, that groove you can use is far from dead.
Tracks: Blind Man, Blind Man; Wasabi; Sunday Morning; End Of The Tunnel; A Place Of Our Own; Splat; The In-Whim; Preachin'; Blue Rondo.
Personnel: David Gibson: trombone; Julius Tolentino: alto saxophone; Jared Gold: organ; Quincy Davis: drums.