C. Michael Bailey, All About Jazz

Taking a slight turn from vocalists into reeds and winds, Adison Evans planted a flag in the ground with her solidly bop-directed Heros (Self Produced, 2016). The saxophonist has had a busy two years, touring with Beyonce and Jay Z up to 2014 when she retreated to the county (in Tuscany, no less) in deference to NYC. She turned her attention backwards to the earthier climes of Heros. Evans now returns with a collection of mostly original compositions on Meridian. Using an international cast of musicians, Evans extends her organic nature with carefully wrought compositions. Of note is her bass clarinet played against the clarinet of Vasko Dukovski on “Prelude and Fugue in Dm The Plunge.” This is a strangely swinging piece that shows a very different use of the bass clarinet than is traditionally heard. Evan’s baritone is baroquely melodic on Henry Mancini’s “Two for the Road” in space she shares with tenor saxophonist and arranger Troy Roberts. Evans’ triumph is saved for last, an almost-big-band arrangement of Miles Davis‘ “Serpent’s Tooth,” music this writer hopes to hear more of from Adison Evans.

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