A solid mainstream pianist who garnered interest in the ’70s with Woody Shaw and Norman Connors, Onaje Allan Gumbs moved into smoother terrain over the next two decades. As the title implies, Return to Form (Half Note) finds him back in the jazz saddle again. On this crisply recorded live session, Gumbs leads a tight-knit trio bolstered here and there by saxophonist Rene McLean as well as by an unobtrusive percussionist. Time spent away from the scene seems to have been a tonic for the pianist; he sounds consistently assured and focused.
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