Recorded at a single session on May 19, 1957, the simply titled Quintet features one of bassist Paul Chambers' rare outings as a bandleader, and it teams him with Detroiters Donald Byrd (trumpet), Tommy Flanagan (piano), and Elvin Jones (drums), and Chicagoan Clifford Jordan (tenor sax). It's a low-key affair, with the quintet running through a couple of standards ("Softly, as in a Morning Sunrise," "What's New"), a pair of compositions from Chambers ("The Hand of Love," "Beauteous"), and two pieces by the prolific Benny Golson ("Minor Run-Down," "Four Strings"). ~ AllMusic
This was not a working trio, except for a series of Mondays at the Five Spot Café in the fall of 1958, but it is a unit that is made up of three powerful parts whose sum is even greater than its whole. What they do with two Ray Bryant orginals, Avery Parrish’s classic blues, "After Hours,” Tadd Dameron’s "Our Delight,” and Phineas Newborn’s "Sugar Ray,” is memorable music from an all-star trio that would never get together again.
Paul Chambers finally receives the Mosaic Select treatment and there's a surprise tossed in with his catalog for fans and connoisseurs: his material recorded for the Transition label. Also included on the Paul Chambers set are the albums Chambers' Music and Whims of Chambers from 1956 and Bass on Top and The Paul Chambers Quintet from 1957. Musicians on these dates ran the gamut from Elvin Jones to Donald Byrd, Clifford Jordan, Horace Silver, Kenny Burrell, Hank Jones, and Art Taylor – an overwhelming number of fellow Detroiters. There are some other odds and ends as well, but most importantly, the Transition material will be of prime interest to John Coltrane fans.