By: Rene Yedema, io pages
Drummer / multi-instrumentalist Gerry Gibbs already had a number of award-winning
radio friendly and good selling albums made when he was challenged by pianist Billy Childs not to write for his audience, but for himself on his next record. His newest album follows ‘Weather Or Not’, a double CD that was created – the title gives it away – in part as a tribute to Weather Report. To take him one step further, Thrasher People, the successor to The Thrasher Band, The Electric Thrasher Orchestra and The Thrasher Dream Trio, creates an orchestral feel for Our People with only five musicians. Gibbs performs with all kinds of percussion instruments and keyboards. The true virtuoso on, for example, Minimoog, Hammond, Fender Rhodes, Clavinet, piano and various synthesizers is Alex Collins, who can also be heard on marimba, xylophone, saxophones and acoustic guitar. Various types of flutes, percussion and background tests are provided by Mayu Saeki, who together with Kyeshie Gibbs is also responsible for the vocals on this release. Finally, Gianluca Renzi plays bass.
With an abundance of musical instruments Gibbs wrote a nineteen volume worldly jazz fusion symphony. “Worldly” is stated here not for world music, but for all of the unique people on this earth, including their ethnic background, life experiences, art, and so on. This project is also influenced by metropolis New York, where not coincidentally is the studio in which Our People is included. It would seem like some of the wordless vocal parts are arranged by Philip Glass, who reaches the same overwhelming effect with city scenes in Godfrey Reggio’s Koyaanisqatsi.