By Dave Cantor | Published February 2019
Reva Records’ inaugural release comes from the Jessica Jones Quartet, a nimble, even-tempered ensemble equally at ease with Continuum’s opening interpretation of Thelonious Monk’s “Evidence” as it is casually moving through the free original “Just This.”
The troupe’s namesake
tenor saxophonist seemingly has influenced the jazz landscape as much through education as through her own recordings. Rare Earth Vibration Association, an organization that runs youth programs and works to produce performances (and even an opera in the East Bay), has encouraged countless students to pursue music, including trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire, who makes an appearance here on “Continuum Reprise,” a song that hints at Jones’ past work with Don Cherry
The ensemble—which also counts bassist Stomu Takeishi, drummer Kenny Wollesen and Jones’ husband, Tony Jones, on tenor—wields such a confident understanding of its powers that the troupe is able to portray a straightahead ethos on “Wither Without You” and then pare back its instrumentation to a single saxophone and bass while transforming Billy Eckstine’s “I Want To Talk About You” into a questing, slowly paced ballad.
Moody and introspective more than explosive, Continuum maintains a medium boil throughout its entirety, a noteworthy accomplishment for any ensemble dealing with some of the genre’s freer elements.