Friday, November 10, 2006

Half the Perfect World - Madeleine Peyroux

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Against all the odds I found myself quite enamoured with Peyroux's previous album Careless Love. Even so I found the over-abundance of slower melancholic songs on that collection a bit tiring.

So you can imagine what I would have liked from this album...and you can probably guess what I actually ended up getting.

First things first though. Madeleine's voice is perhaps better than ever, and as ever should please fans of Billie Holliday. And when the songs are upbeat the combination is a winning one.

The cover version of Leonard Cohen's Blue Alert is a flirty treat,the opener (co-written by Peyroux) I'm All Right even see's Peyroux laughing and perhaps the highlight of the CD is Smile (written by Charlie Chaplin nonetheless) which despite it's melancholic lyrics ends the album in a wondrfully upbeat mood.

However, less successful are the dull cover of Everybody's Talking and the version of Tom Waits' Looking For The Heart Of Saturday Night doesn't do enough to match up to the original.

If you're a fan of Peyroux's style of music, no doubt you will find much to enjoy here. Personally I'm disappointed that this isn't all that different from Careless Love and happens to most resemble the bits of that album that I wasn't fond of. Still, Billie Holliday aficionado's will find much to enjoy and no doubt the album will be the soundtrack to many a Christmas dinner party this festive season.

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