Related Reviews
The Jazz Breakfast
"A life-affirming evening of sophisticated modern art."
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Jazz Times
You'll be hard pressed to do better than her latest release
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Jazz Magazine
'La Londonienne Claire Martin fait l'unanimité des amateurs de jazz vocal de les plus tâtillons...'
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Music-Web International
"...an interesting digression in her musical journey."
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allaboutjazz.com
"A Modern Art is a gem."
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hifi.nl
"Fijne jazz met gelukkig een audiofiele tint! Een aanrader, nee, verplichte kost voor liefhebbers!"
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Audio Video Club of Atlanta
"...this time it's personal..."
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Audiophile Audition
4 Stars
"...very highly recommended!"
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In Tune International
"...assured, imaginative and irresistible..."
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allgigs.co.uk
"The verdict? Super collection."
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thejazzmann.com
4 Stars
"'A Modern Art' might just be her best album yet."
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Jazz Journal
"lovers of superior jazz singing should acquire without delay."
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The Vortex
"Quite simply a cracker of an album."
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Mojo
4 Stars
"...there’s no way she could come up with anything less than quality"
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SoundStage.com
4 Stars
"In every song you can hear the singer's joy of creation and delight in performance."
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The Observer
"Her warm, natural style is complemented by the cream of today's British jazz scene."
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muszeroldal.hu
"Claire Martin a BBC/British Jazz Awards ötszörös gyoztese..."
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Record Collector (Easy Listening)
5 Stars
"An album that keep you on your toes."
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Record Collector
4 Stars
"[Claire Martin's] in scintillating form..."
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BBC Music Magazine
4 Stars
"Martin's delivery is artful across the genres."
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The Times
"...utterly assured."
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UKVibe.org
4 Stars
"'A Modern Art' seems set to be her most [album] successful to date."
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The Jazz Breakfast
"This is, I think, the best one yet."
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Soul and Jazz and Funk
"an intriguing mix of brand new material"
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Scotland on Sunday
"Her eight-piece band is funky and certainly swings."
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Sunday Times
4 Stars
"The most gifted jazz singer this country has produced in 20 years..."
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The Guardian
a consummate jazz singer with old-school virtues
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Time Out
4 Stars
... her finest album to date
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The Scotsman
4 Stars
"...she is still a cut above the competition..."
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BBC online
Claire's voice starts silky and breathy and expands to gospel proportions
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Irish Times
4 Stars
"Claire Martin has such class and authority..."
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Northern Echo (Jazz Notes)
"...must go straight into the best of 2009 list. It is a stunning tribute to an outstanding jazz singer..."
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London Evening Standard
4 Stars
Claire Martin always delivers the goods
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Venue Magazine
"Few vocalists have managed the unbroken success of Claire Martin..."
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Greater Manchester City Life
4 Stars
"the singer herself is the incarnation of sass and vivacity"
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Metro
"beautifully delivered with trademark cool-school virtuosity by Martin."
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Jazzwise
4 Stars
"Claire Martin is really very good"
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EDP24
There are singers - and then there are singers
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Claire Martin - A Modern Art - The Jazz Rag


16 November 2009
The Jazz Rag
Les Tomkins

Here's Claire's new one, recorded in March 2009. As ever, her backing team is first-rate, with Gareth Williams on piano, Phil Robson on guitar, Laurence Cottle on bass, and James Maddren or Chris Dagley on drums, plus front-line and solo work by Nigel Hitchcock on alto and the ubiquitous Mark Nightingale on trombone. Her opener, Everything I've Got, is the only song that falls into the ‘standard' category, but her spirited version is imbued with a funky beat and has an extra set of good lyrics added.

Claire's admirable object continues to be to demonstrate that worthwhile material can exist away from the distant past. So Twentieth Century is a worldly-wise comment on the way we live now. Love Is Real is an evocative ballad by the late pianist Esbjorg Svensson. Lower Case, utilising a Joshua Redman original, is the first one I find lyrically hard to comprehend, but her own title theme which follows also evades me - a great pity, as it's apparently about making jazz more accessible.

Her other compositions here, Edgeways has literate lyrics that can be fully discerned, in Latin vein. Love of Another, by Rebecca Bakken, is all sung, in a measured tango-type rhythm. A topical Totally comes at a nice piano/organ-based easy pace. Among later ear-catchers are Donald Fagen's Things I Miss The Most and Lauren Kinhan's As We Live And Breathe - both Latin, but contrastingly appealing. Finally, Nirvana finds Claire alone with Phil Robson, at her most expressive.


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