David Grubb

R2 Rock’n’Reel : Album Review


Traditional folk meets mood music and jazz on this album. David Grubb is a fiddle player and composer, born in Scotland, trained at the Royal Welsh College Of Music And Drama (RWCMD), and his debut album consists of eight original pieces – two of them over ten minutes – with titles inspired by city-scapes; ‘The Climb/86th Floor Jig’ and ‘Bleecker Street/The Busker’ are particularly suggestive of New York.

David has gathered together a very special band including RWCMD alumni Corben Lee and Katie Lower and guitarist Daniel Whitting – he shares arranging credits with Corben and Whitting – and composer and electronic artist Samuel Barnes. There are also clarinet, whistle and accordion and although there are no lyrics, there are six vocalists, heard to greatest effect at the beginning of ‘Milestone’.


The philosophy of the album would appear to reflect that of The Tripp Ensemble, with whom he also performs, in that it aims to bring together disparate elements that would not usually be heard in a single performance. It's strength is that High Rise is never dull because something else will be along in a minute, but some ideas drop in for a bar or two and disappear without being fully realised, which is a shame. 

High Rise still defies categorisation but I’m prepared to say that it’s a brilliant album.

Reviewed by Dai Jeffries

Posted on 2015-06-11 14:07:46


David is a Scottish Violinist and graduate of the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama. He works as a freelance musician in a variety of genres.

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