Related Reviews
The International Review of Music
'A versatile performer with the capacity to find the inner life of whatever she sings.'
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Sound Stage Experience
4½ Stars
'...this disc proves she has arrived as an impeccable master artist and one of the greatest living voices in jazz.'
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Next Magazine
'...Martin is a wonderful interpreter who's perfectly paired with Bennett...'
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Home Theater Sound
5 Stars
"...their partnership has created a rare and special collaboration where the superlative product is truly more than the sum of its parts."
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Cabaret Scenes
'Both performers have flair for phrasing. Arrangements are refined and interesting.'
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Jazz Times
'When Britain's foremost jazz singer meets the island's most imaginative composer, the outcome is always stellar.'
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The New York Observer
'...sung to perfection by England's best young jazz singer, Claire Martin.'
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The Wall Street Journal
'The result is a kind of perfection...'
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New York Times
'...Martin, whose renditions...revealed the heart of a saloon torch beating inside the chipper jazz playmate.'
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In Tune International
'...perfect combination of singer and pianist...'
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MusicWeb International
"The collaboration between Claire Martin and Richard Rodney Bennett works superbly."
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Record Collector
4 Stars
"The blend is attractive and oddly harmonious."
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The Walman Report / Culinary Gourmet
'Martin is a seasoned vocalist/performer and the end result is uniquely original.'
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Jersey Jazz
"...an album that is a sheer delight from start to finish."
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The Irish Times
"...plenty of wit and wordplay for the duo to savour, Martin is impeccable..."
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BBC Music Magazine
'...near-perfect match of singer and accompanist...'
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The Yorkshire Post
"Here's a lovely record...Martin is excellent throughout"
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Theater Mania
"...her smokey voice caresses the composer's melodies."
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The Observer
"...touching, clever, beautifully poised and deceptively casual-sounding."
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The Times
4 Stars
'Martin's jazz virtuosity adds another dimension. When her honeyed timbre slips into the lower register she captures the romance of a Ben Webster tenor solo.'
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LondonJazz
'Claire Martin, both in the duo setting and in front of the chamber group made each song, each moment come to life.'
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O's Place Jazz Magazine
'It is a pleasure to listen to!'
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North London News
'...a tempting mélange of the familiar and the under-visited...'
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The Scotsman
"Martin's beautifully delivered interpretations are spot-on whatever the mood of the song..."
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Scotland on Sunday
4 Stars
"...a joy to hear."
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London Jazz
'...her intimate, deceptively unfussy vocal style perfectly complemented by his flawlessly eloquent piano.'
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Jazzwise
4 Stars
'...every one is a small gem.'
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Claire Martin - Witchcraft - Jazz Journal


01 March 2011
Jazz Journal
Bruce Crowther

Sometimes the idea for a partnership in music sounds wrong on paper but succeeds wonderfully well in practice.  A case in point is the partnership between Martin, one of the half-dozen best jazz singers in the world, and Bennett, a gifted classical composer whose symphonies and works for film and theatre are outstanding.  They have worked together now for a number of years, appearing in London and New York, including a March 2011 tour.  In their act the pair provide audiences with superb interpretations of songs in a manner that must surely please many otherwise disparate elements of their individual audiences.  On this CD, in which they explore the wide range of composer Cy Coleman, mainly from Broadway, their magical touch is really quite exceptional.

In their interpretations, Martin and Bennett encapsulate all that is good from their respective crafts, blending these qualities in such a way that the result is one timeless version of a song after another.  Among Martin's seven solos are lovely versions of I'm Gonna Laugh You Right Out of My Life, Nobody Does It Like Me and On Second Thoughts; her sound is warmly intimate, mature and filled with understanding.  Bennett's accompaniment on every track is rich and apposite, subtle here and earthy there.  His four solo vocals include Sometime When You're Lonely, Let Me Down Easy and That's My Style, and are delivered with a comfortably-worn sound that charms the listener.  When Martin and Bennett duet on the remaining four songs, the years of collaboration are vividly apparent through their easy and unforced familiarity.  Indeed, there is not a weak moment anywhere, all the songs being given very special treatment.  Sound quality is exceptional and there is a good liner note from Brian Morton.  Unequivocally recommended.


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