A longtime member (and lead trumpeter) of the Jazz At Lincoln Center Orchestra,
Jones went into the studio with band-mates Orrin Evans (piano), Luques
Curtis (bass) and Obed Calvaire (drums) to produce a live session (no
fancy production or overdubs) that would have the immediacy and urgency
of a bygone jazz age, though it should be stressed that his playing is
anything but old-fashioned.
As leader on this Mack Avenue CD, Jones plays six of his own compositions,
plus five other tunes written by the likes of Jackie McLean and Stephen
Sondheim. At all times he is a commanding presence on the trumpet, playing
with a crisp, flawless sound. The same can be said for the rest of the
quartet, each one of whom is a remarkable musician in his own right.
Produced by Christian McBride and Al Pryor, QUARTET ranges between lyrical
exploration, fiery swing and down-home blues. There are also some delightful
surprises, such as a slowed-down deconstruction of How High the Moon.
That old chestnut becomes a sparkling gem in Jones interpretation.
QUARTET offers nearly two hours of fresh-sounding, exquisitely played
jazz, much of it improvised.