Related Reviews
The Jazz Breakfast
"A life-affirming evening of sophisticated modern art."
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You'll be hard pressed to do better than her latest release
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'La Londonienne Claire Martin fait l'unanimité des amateurs de jazz vocal de les plus tâtillons...'
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Claire "at her most expressive"
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"...this time it's personal..."
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Audiophile Audition
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In Tune International
"...assured, imaginative and irresistible..."
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thejazzmann.com
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"'A Modern Art' might just be her best album yet."
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"An album that keep you on your toes."
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"[Claire Martin's] in scintillating form..."
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UKVibe.org
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"'A Modern Art' seems set to be her most [album] successful to date."
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"This is, I think, the best one yet."
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"The most gifted jazz singer this country has produced in 20 years..."
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a consummate jazz singer with old-school virtues
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BBC online
Claire's voice starts silky and breathy and expands to gospel proportions
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Northern Echo (Jazz Notes)
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Claire Martin always delivers the goods
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Greater Manchester City Life
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Metro
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Jazzwise
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EDP24
There are singers - and then there are singers
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Claire Martin - A Modern Art - SoundStage.com


05 October 2009
SoundStage.com
Rad Bennett
4 Stars

Jazz singer Claire Martin is one of Linn's primary recording artists, and her relationship with the label goes back to when she released her first album, The Waiting Game, in 1992. Though many emerging stars jump ship and move to a bigger label as soon as possible, Martin and Linn have stuck close together, to the benefit of both the singer and the record company. Martin just released her 13th album for Linn, A Modern Art, and it's sure to please listener and critic alike. On this 14-track set, Martin goes beyond the usual Great American Songbook experience. Only two tried-and-true chestnuts, "Everything I've Got Belongs to You," and "Everybody Today Is Turning On," are included, and both are given new and fresh interpretations. For the dozen remaining tracks on the disc, Martin has turned to lesser known but worthwhile songwriters. Martin pours her heart into the late Esbjörn Svensson's "Love Is Real," which shows her emotional side. But she also brings wit and sauciness to songs like "Things I Miss the Most" (Donald Fagan and Walter Becker) and "Edge Ways" (Claire Martin and Laurence Cottle), as well as the smart, savvy title song, also by Martin and Cottle. In every song you can hear the singer's joy of creation and delight in performance.


Backing Martin are some of Britain's best session musicians, and the engineers have provided clean and clear sound. The disc is a hybrid multichannel SACD (Linn AKD 340), which means it has a CD layer for normal playback. (All of Linn's discs are single entries, so there's no confusion or expense of having two different versions; if you want CD or SACD, you can buy the same disc.) If you play the SACD multichannel tracks, the sound expands a bit. But as usual, Linn is very sparing in the use of the surrounds. My only complaint is that this time around, the stage seems a little shallow. If you go to Linn's download site, the album, along with most Linn releases, is also available as a high-quality download in several different formats and price ranges.


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