The Bad Plus – Never Stop

With Never Stop, The Bad Plus, which made up of bassist Reid Anderson, pianist Ethan Iverson, and drummer David King, proves that the trio can write its own tunes just as well as reinterpreting others. “The Radio Tower Has a Beating Heart” opens the album with an invigorating jazz-classical improvisation that is filled with harmonic intensity and complexity. The title track, however, takes a different turn toward pop. The melody is catchy as hell even without a hook to rely on. Over Iverson’s and King’s the big, groovy beat, Anderson plays some infectious ostinatos reminiscing of Thelonious Monk. The slow pieces, “People Like You” and “Bill Hickman at Home,” find the trio digs deep into their compositions, creativities and souls. The brief “Super America” joyfully closes out the album, yet one would hope that the record would never stop.

Also worth watching: The Bad Plus at the Rosslyn Jazz Festival 2010.