The trio gathered at Rainbow studio, following one rehearsal and a concert to record to lay down nine tracks in two hours - a record company’s dream one assumes, given such brief studio time. Pianist Jerve penned three of these vibrant piano-led creations, Thornton composed two, including the funky-baroque Red Eye and the soul-inflected ballad, Passengers while the vaguely cerebral, knotty title track Circumstance was a collective endeavour.
Supplementing the originals, there are adventurous readings of Cole Porter’s Everything I Love and Bill Evans’ Time Remembered.
Most everything laid down here is subtle and understated enough for the listener to want to come back and get to the elusive heart of the exercise. That is what the best of jazz should be about, in any case, hunting down sometimes opaque essentials, peering into water in search of translucence.
Margit, the opener, running to almost eight minutes, begins as a tender lyrical thing, delicate and meditative before finding a wistful bend in the road in which to prowl. 54 Duncan Terrace had me Googling every so mildly (eh, yes, it's an address near Islington but more than that one cannot tell.) There is something tender and deep-hearted about the piece, it's feline and evasive, and it soars gently like a not-too-ambitious kite.
Everything I Love is particularly expansive and open-ended and has the air of improvisation. Angular and sun-dappled at the same time, it's a long-tailed document running to seven-and-a-half minutes.