Steve Davis – Gettin’ It Done (Posi-Tone, 2012)
Trombonist Steve Davis has many credits as both a leader and as a sideman in the modern mainstream jazz scene. On this album he channels the spirit of Art Blakey, Horace Silver and other hard bop masters to create a fine and swinging album. On this album, he is accompanied by Josh Bruneau on trumpet and flugelhorn, Mike DiRubbo on alto saxophone, Larry Willis on piano, Nat Reeves on bass and Billy Williams on drums. They achieve a full, rich sound when playing together and the music offers a wealth of solo space. Opening with “Village Blues” the group sounds lush and deep, playing at a medium tempo. Trombone over cymbal tapping and well paced trumpet make way for round-robin soloing over swinging drums. The title track has a strutting boppish melody featuring fast saxophone over pulsating bass and drums. Muscular hard bop is also the order of the day on “Sunny” with upbeat trombone and swinging drums setting the pace for a driving piano, bass and drums section. I enjoyed the uptempo tracks the most, but the group does add a couple of ballads to the program for flavor. “Alike” slows the tempo to a ballad feel with long tones of music luxuriously caressing the melody and setting up a fluid piano based interlude. Beginning at a slow tempo, “Longview” opens with slow piano and horns building to intuitive swing as the song gradually gathers pace.