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Madeleine Peyroux has one of the most beautiful singing voices I have ever heard and draws comparisons with Billie Holliday and Ella Fitzgerald, she has a silky smooth voicethat really controls the songs and draws the listener in to the wonderful melodies.
This her second album is her best as far as I'm concerned, it shows a maturity in her music and has some lovely ballads on it. The vision you have when listening to her work is of a seedy smoke filled jazz bar with a lone singer and a small backing band of piano and strings and maybe a snare drum.
The opening track Dance Me to the End of Love is a cover of a Leonard Cohen track and it is upbeat and sung with a great deal of warmth and this is followed by Don't Wait Too Long which is my favourite track on the album as it has a swing feel to it that is excellent.
For me the whole album is very strong and the songs merge into each other, there is a range of blues, folk and jazz songs on the album and there is a good range and depth to the music. There are no weak tracks on the album and the songs flow along ncely, this is music to relax to and to tap your feet to, a wonderful album which is well worth listening to.
This is one of the many albums that my dad got me to buy, as he convinced me that Madeline Peyroux was a good singer and someon that i would thoroughly enjoy. And as usual, he was right, as this is an able that i enjoy every time that i put it on.
The albume itself is based around blues covered in french tinged vocals that fit this style and genre so well, its as if it was invented for her. And as with most female vocalists, it is the vocals that are the standouts on this able, bringing the blues and emotions on these tracks to a much more personal level.
Almost every track on this album is a highlight, each possessing their own feel and emotion and allowing the listener to become ever closer to the singer of these songs, but if i was to pick out my favourites, they would be 'Dance Me To The End Of Love', 'You're Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go', 'Lonesome Road' and 'Careless Love', although i am sure that others could fit into this list.
Overall, this is a very good album and deserving in anyone's collection who enjoys a bluesy album or simply a good female vocalist.
Never before have I purchased an album without having listened to a single track beforehand. My initial contact with this artist was a 30 second TV advert which made me look up from my paper as the voice had a hauntingly beautiful quality. I barely had time to note the name of the artist however I did remember the fact that the advert ended with a quote from the Times and therefore after a brief search of the archive sections I found a full review of Careless Love by Madeline Peyroux which was full of praise. It was then time to log onto cd-wow and for £7.99 I was the proud owner of this fantastic album.
Now for those younger members raised on the incessant boom boom of contemporary dance music this is what us old uns call SINGING. Beautifully penned lyrics, delivered with precision and passion and a supporting rhythm that carries the listeners mind to new levels without the need for chemicals, well actually a nice glass of red wine does actually help the listening experience.
The is the second album from Peyroux following on nine years after the widely acclaimed debut album Dreamland. At the time of Dreamland the 22 year American Peyroux had been working as a street artist in Paris. Such is the story of rags to riches that inspires many a performer to dream of success. In the past eight year Peyroux has returned to performing live until the release of this her second album. I have not heard her first album but on the strength of Careless Love I will definitely be checking it out.
The comparisons between Peyroux and the great Billie Holliday are unavoidable, physically and socially they are nothing alike but both share the same melancholic seedy smoke filled bar room voice that is just made for singing the blues whilst at the same time having the range to cover the more lively jazz songs. It is music to sit back and relax to, music to provide the backdrop to some self reflection, music to move to and music to have as the perfect companion to a fun filled dinner party.
The album opens with cover of Leonard Cohens Dance me to the end of Love with it lively strong piano solo masking the rather dark lyrics. Track two is one of the highlights of the album with a track co-penned by Peyroux herself showing her talent as a writer. Dont Wait too Long is a lovely swing arrangement with her lilting voice making this a real foot tapping of a song.
Dont Cry Baby is track three and this has a real blues feel to it with the Holliday comparisons most evident. Peyroux gives feeling to the song and at times may sound slightly off key but this is what makes her singing so beautiful.
With the exception of Dont wait too Long this is an album of covers however Peyroux brings her own style to each track. Your Gonna make me Lonesome when you go is a cover of a Bob Dylan song delivered with a clarity of lyric that Im sure Bob has never managed, again it is an upbeat lively compilation delivered over some sad lyrics talking about the end of a relationship. This is one of my favorite tracks on the album and is simply beautiful.
Born in Georgia and raise in Paris and New York the French influence is clear in a lot of the arrangements. Many of the tracks bring to mind an afternoon spent sitting in a café by the Seine. Between the Bars provides just such an emotion, these is even some background traffic noise to further enhance the illusion of Paris. The French influence is further emphasized with the cover of Jai deux Amours delivered in smooth French that almost requires no translation such is the emotion in the song.
This is an album of classics and for me three other stand out tracks are Lonesome Road which has a religious gospel overtone to it and a swinging beat the voice of Peyroux lifting it to a higher level. Weary Blues a Hank Williams cover is the slowest track on the album and has a really haunting quality to it with Peyroux voice prominent. Finally the title track Careless Love, made famous by Bessie Smith in the 1920s is a classic that Peyroux does great credit to.
If I have been too gushing about this album then I apologise but it is not often that you come across something that makes you sit up and say wow.
If you have five minutes to spare check out her website
and have a listen to Dont wait too Long and if you like it then buy the album, if you dont then there is always the new Goldie Looking Chain album to consider.
Happy listening and thanks for reading my first ever album review.
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Dance Me To The End Of Love
2 Don't Wait Too Long
3 Don't Cry Baby
4 You're Gonna Make Me Lonesome When You Go
5 Between The Bars
6 No More
7 Lonesome Road
8 J'Ai Deux Amours
9 Weary Blues
10 I'll Look Around
11 Careless Love
12 This Is Heaven To Me