The Gathering is the Caribbean Jazz Project's third release; principals Dave Samuels and Dave Valentin are joined by Paquito D'Rivera, once a regular with the group, on the lively opener, "Rendezvous," as well as a Latin reworking of Monk's "Bemsha Swing." Oliver Nelson's classic "Stolen Moments" comes in for a moody 7/4 treatment. Pianist Dario Eskanazi, bassist Ruben Rodriguez, and percussionists Dafnis Prieto, Richie Flores, and Robert Quintero provide strong backing for the front-and-center solo exchanges of Samuels and Valentin. The band is consistently melodic and accessible, not just on romantic themes like "Libertad" and "The Path" but also on more adventurous fare like Prieto's "El Guarachero Intrigozo (The Scheming Party Animal)" and the big finish, "Masacoteando (In the Groove)."
AllMusic Review by David R. Adler