Gamble Brothers Band - Back to the Bottom

Gamble Brothers Band - Back to the Bottom
Back to the Bottom
Recording Location:
Archer Records; Sam Phillips Recording Service; Willie Mitchell's Royal Studio
Jam Bands
Release Date:
September 9, 2003

On their second release, Memphis' Gamble Brothers Band solidify their sound, meshing jazz, funk, soul, and to a lesser extent blues into a bubbling, innovative concoction. Led by Al Gamble's Hammond B-3 washes and gutsy, soulful vocals, the guitar-free quartet slips and slides through nearly an hour of music that could only have originated in the South. The group lays down a swampy groove on the closing instrumental "Caddilactopus," an eight-minute showcase of near telepathic interplay that finds them jamming within the constraints of melody similar to their hometown heroes and clear influences Booker T. & the MG's. Loose when they need to be but tight enough to pull off rearranged covers of Gary Wright's '70s chestnut "Love Is Alive" and even a frisky version of Randy Newman's "Little Criminals," they expertly navigate the tightrope between jams and intricate arrangements. Finger-snapping riffs like the one used as an intro to the instrumental "Escape Alley" recall the Meters, but their jazzy side and Art Edmaiston's creative sax playing pull these tunes away from the obvious and into their own territory. The wiry funk of "Tiki Bar" and the throbbing pulse of the self-explanatory "Land of Soul" captures nuances and a free-flowing sense of mature exploration that few bands exhibit this early in their career. Not every song finds the pocket, and the occasional missteps like the slightly lumbering "Old New One" and the jittery, confused ska/funk of "Share" show that the group still need to bring their songwriting and arrangement skills up the level of their instrumental proficiency. But the Gamble Brothers Band are onto something here and this album is an indication that, if marketed correctly, they have the chops, intelligence, and drive to cross over to a wider audience.

Record Store / Al Gamble / Chad GambleGamble Brothers Band4:05
Back to the Bottom / Al Gamble / Chad GambleGamble Brothers Band3:37
Love Is Alive / G. Randall WrightGamble Brothers Band3:33
Share / Art EdmaistonGamble Brothers Band4:08
Tiki Bar / Art Edmaiston / Ross RiceGamble Brothers Band3:59
Come on Sam / Al Gamble / Chad GambleGamble Brothers Band5:05
One Stone / Al Gamble / Chad GambleGamble Brothers Band3:56
Escape Alley / Art Edmaiston / Al GambleGamble Brothers Band3:48
Old New One / Art Edmaiston / Al Gamble / Chad GambleGamble Brothers Band3:44
Land of Soul / Art Edmaiston / Al GambleGamble Brothers Band5:19
Little Criminals / Randy NewmanGamble Brothers Band5:36
CadillactopusGamble Brothers Band8:00

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