Skip to main content
Loading...

Featured Post

Game Of Thrones Season 8 - End Game With Sinhala Subtitles

Flipboard

Flipboard

Cécile McLorin Salvant - The Window Music Album Reviews

The leader of a new pack of fully modern jazz singers explores the historical context and modern possibilities of every song she sings, even the deepest American standards.

When the jazz vocalist Cécile McLorin Salvant sings “Somewhere” on her fifth album, The Window, she approaches the American standard with complete knowledge of its monumental past—and its possibilities in the present. Over 60 years after its debut as a central number in West Side Story, “Somewhere” stands among the last century’s most-covered numbers, as one generation after another finds beauty to its promise of a place where they might fit in. So how does an artist in 2018 make “Somewhere” sound new? That’s the question Salvant and pianist Sullivan Fortner pose. After Fortner sneaks a few bustling bars of West Side Story’s “America” into the intro (a wink to the crowd at New York’s Village Vanguard, where this cover and another quarter of the album were recorded), the pair interrogate the tune and its guarantee of a safe haven.

Arguably the leader in a resurgent scene of fully modern jazz singers, Salvant makes great tonal leaps throughout “Somewhere.” She sounds playful at the beginning, as though acknowledging the convention of past jazz masters interpreting it. But soon, she sings those two syllables like they’re a grim punchline. Near the end, she imbues it with the melancholy of a daydream she knows will never come true. Salvant understands the song as quintessentially American, an aspirational immigrant tune—“Somewhere… we’ll find a new way of living.” To make it sound relevant for our moment, she introduces the idea that “somewhere” might actually be anywhere but here.

Among Salvant’s most distinguishing artistic traits is how she makes those tonal shifts not just exciting but meaningful. Her craft is undeniable, but built into her craft is the freshness of encountering each tune as though for the first time, figuring it out in the moment from one note to the next. She sings in conversation with every song, its lyrics, and its historical context. Salvant accomplishes that not only by using her voice to comment on lyrics while she delivers them but also by developing a diverse, daring repertoire. On The Window, she sings French cabaret, American showtunes, pop standards, and deep soul and blues cuts. She covers Nat King Cole and Brazilian songwriter Dori Caymmi, Cole Porter and jump blues pianist Buddy Johnson. She savors the spaces between styles, between lines, between notes.

Take The Window’s first two tracks. Salvant opens with a gently psychedelic cover of “Visions,” from Stevie Wonder’s 1973 album, Innervisions. Fortner introduces the song with a set of vertiginous piano chords, as though leading us down a dark staircase into a basement nightclub. Salvant remains on the street, dreaming of a place—another somewhere—where “hate’s a dream and love forever stands…. Or is this a vision in my mind?” She never answers the question, but her voice has the steadiness of someone who wants to believe. Salvant follows it with “One Step Ahead,” a love song from an early Aretha Franklin record. The shift from social issues to romantic maneuvering seems jarring at first. But Salvant finds new implications in the song, not only by increasing the tempo to a full sprint but by placing it in the new context of this moment in American history. “I’m only one step ahead of heartbreak, one step ahead of misery,” she sings with an almost frantic determination.

Salvant has found a fine match in Fortner, a New Orleans native who has played with the likes of Wynton Marsalis, John Scofield, and Paul Simon. He doesn’t accompany her so much as join in the conversation she’s having with these songs, occasionally even arguing with her about them. He toggles between the blues and jazz and classical figures with dizzying fluidity during “I’ve Got Your Number,” while his tectonic bass chords for “By Myself” make it seem like the ground is constantly shifting beneath Salvant. And when it comes to songs, it is: Salvant sings with the understanding that no tune is ever set in stone, even one as frequently sung as “Somewhere.” On The Window, she excels at keeping every possibility open all at once.


View the original article here

Comments

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Loading...

Popular posts from this blog

Dell XPS 13 9380 (2019) Review

Dell's flagship laptop returns to us in 2019 with refreshed specs, a brand new webcam design and a cheaper model. We review the XPS 13 9380 in full.
Should I Buy The Dell XPS 13 (2019)?
The XPS 13 for 2019 ticks all the boxes. It looks great, the build quality is excellent, it’s nice and portable and has a wide range of specs to choose from.
While not a massive upgrade from last year's model, it’s had some solid refinement including getting the webcam back into the top bezel and also introduces a more affordable Core i3 edition.

Samsung Galaxy S9 vs Samsung Galaxy S10e

Samsung's Galaxy S range has been updated and here we compare the S10e - the new 'lite' model - to last years' Galaxy S9 to help you decide which phone is best for you.
Should I Buy The Samsung Galaxy S10e Or Samsung Galaxy S9?
The S10e could be the sleeper hit of this year. It doesn’t have the embedded fingerprint sensor of the S10 and S10 Plus or their triple cameras, but it comes with the same processors, new screen design, ultra-wide camera, and all in a compact and comfortable format with a smaller price-tag.
That being said, the S9 is still an excellent device, and its new, lower price makes it a definite bargain.

Huawei P30 Pro Release Date, Price & Specs Rumours

Huawei's MWC press conference didn't include an announcement of the P30 range. Instead, it will hold a launch event in Paris at the end of March. We round up rumours, speculation and more on the new Huawei line-up, including the expected P30 release date, price and specifications.

Huawei Mate 20 X Review

The Huawei Mate 20 X is an obscenely large smartphone but it has many of the features of the Mate 20 Pro for less. Here’s our full review of the huge premium slab
Should I Buy The Huawei Mate 20 X?
With a bigger screen, bigger battery and smaller notch than the Mate 20 Pro, the Huawei Mate 20 X also has the same camera set up and adds a headphone jack. If you want the most screen possible, it might be for you. 
You lose the curved display, wireless charging, full water resistance and secure Face ID but for many that won’t matter if a huge display, outstanding camera and great performance are top of your list. If you want a normal size phone, get the Mate 20 Pro.

iHealth Core Review

This smart scale from iHealth offers detailed body composition measurements, from BMI to visceral fat rating. Find out what we think in our iHealth Core review.
Should I Buy The iHealth Core? We like the way that the Core and Lite scales interact with the other iHealth products, and the Core offers a bunch of useful metrics with which to monitor your health. Setup is easy and the app's graphs give a decent visual representation of your health-metric trends as you progress.

Like Fan Page