Option, March 27, 1999

The C. Gibbs Review – Sincerity’s Ground

So you’ve written a bunch of songs that just don’t fit your regular band; what to do? Solo album, here we come. Few things sound more warning bells to a reviewer than these generally half-baked projects, but Sincerety’s Ground is a pleasant exception. Christian Gibbs sings and guitars with the Morning Glories; for this vacation project, he’s whipped up songs that layer unpretentious and slightly sedate rock with a country feel and a dab of blues riffs. Fans of, say, the Beat Farmers or the Walkabouts might find it worthwhile. If Sincerety’s Ground isn’t in their league, its very modesty is also the reason it’s so listenable. Gibbs doesn’t cloak himself in rural authenticity and doesn’t attempt grandiose statements but says what he’s got to say, then stops. Even when comparing a rose to rosy cheeks, he manages the neat trick of sounding not completely serious and like he means every word. It doesn’t hurt that Gibbs uses longer melodies than just repeating guitar riffs so that he doesn’t sound rushed. Quite a pleasant surprise. (Earth Music/Cargo, 4901-906 Morena Blvd., San Diego, CA 92117)

– Lang Thompson