CD of the Month (February 09)
Once again, here are two CDs I’ve been listening to and enjoying. The first is from a Brazilian bassist, Esperanza Spalding. Esperanza
Spalding is vocalist, composer and arranger. She is hugely talented, combining Jazz and Latin syncopations and a superb vocal range. There are both mellow, silky vocals as well as stellar Brazilian sambas. Her accompanying musicians are top class and add extra colour and flourish to her musicality. I imagine if you have the opportunity to see her perform live you’ll be in for a splendid evening.
In a completely different genre (and to confirm that I do listen to things other than jazz!), I’ve been enjoying the intriguing Seattle based group, Fleet Foxes.
Like other reviewers, I was intrigued by this debut album and for a number of reasons. First, these 5 young musicians come from Seattle — often identified as the home of grunge (and this is only a neutral observation on my part). Fleet Foxes are anything but grunge and this is my second point. They combine various styles: part folk, part indie and what is called baroque folk. It is an intriguing blend of styles. Third, an exceptional feature is the vocal arrangements. I’m going to date myself but these guys do remind me of the intricate vocal harmonies of Crosby, Stills and Nash. While I think CS&N are the best, these new young voices give a good run for the money! Personally, I have to say, I wasn’t immediately taken by their lyrics but upon repeated listening I find myself starting to ‘get it’. You have to sit down and listen (perhaps read the lyrics as well) to appreciate their work.