Melody Gardot: My One and Only Thrill (Verve/Universal)

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Melody Gardot: My One and Only Thrill
Melody Gardot: My One and Only Thrill (Verve/Universal)

This extraordinary jazz chanteuse has appeared at Elsewhere previously: her debut album Worriesome Heart was quite something and announced a new singer-songwriter as much as a voice imbued with sensuality and emotional depth. Her interesting backstory (at the Elsewhere posting) is worth checking out, it may explain something.

This new album not only confirms that early impression but consolidates her reputation in a collection of sensitively sung originals (and a light Latin take on Somewhere Over the Rainbow) which are produced by Larry Klein (the bassist, producer, songwriter and former Mr Joni Mitchell) who really knows how to create a setting for this kind of gentle and understated voice.

The sprightly If The Stars Were Mine sits a little uneasily here -- too lightweight but destined to be hugely popular at a guess -- but on material with titles such as Your Heart is As Black As The Night, Who Will Comfort Me and The Rain she digs down into some slightly unsettling places. She leavens that with material which is more love and life-affirming.

This is sophisticated music which should appeal to those along the Bacharach/Sinatra/samba axis, a step up and inward from Norah Jones perhaps, less acerbic than recent Joni Mitchell, but a rare talent any way you cut it. 

 

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