There are a lot of bad Links but most metal ones are actually okay. Especially if you get a NY STM. What Eric does improves the air flow but it will still have some resistance - just like a good link The radical difference between a stock STM and Eric's mod is IMO, other than the obvious silver plating, a W.Link is more reed friendly, gives you a much better feedback behind the horn and has a more defined core sound that's easier to focus. I've played quite a few Otto Link mpcs, both new and old, stock and refaced and his version is definitely at the top of the list.
If you feel you need a more free blowing mpc, you should also check out Eric's new custom line of metal mouthpieces if you don't necessarily need a Link. Also, I'm sure if you can explain what you want in detail to Eric (especially since he's familiar with your current setup) he will lead you towards what's best for you.
I briefly owned a rubber JJ and the squeezed throat and chamber design wasn't my cup of tea. It felt like it was fighting me.
The W.Link may be it - however the one I had was very much tuned in the classic style. Basically, you get something as close to a good vintage Link as possible. A good Link mpc - metal or rubber - may seem harder to play at first because you have to be 100% involved in tone production and from what you're telling me, it seems like that would be exactly what you need. You may want to try one of these Tenor Madness rubber Links as well. Both stores have great customer service so don't hesitate to discuss what you're looking for with them as they can custom make or pick a piece for you.
Hey there! I would say the Warburton Link had a very classic vibe to it. It is a versatile piece ( as easy to play with a Webster or Coltrane vibe ) but it's nowhere near a "Link on steroid" type piece. However, you can ask to get a piece with more or less baffle. The fact that the chamber is so large inside will allow for a bigger baffle without sounding thin or too bright. That said, I think the key to being heard in larger or louder bands is 1. good amplification 2. allowing the reed to vibrate and opening throat / pushing air with diaphragm.
What piece do you play at the moment? I found the Phil-Tone Custom hard rubber could get very loud and bright. I now play a Tenor Madness rubber Link and although it's not as bright, it can get insanely loud as well...