Secret Love - Jazz Review

Claire Martin does much better [than Gwyneth Herbert]. Having abandoned the mature-rock-belter pose of Take My Heart, Secret Love continues the work done on Too Darn Hot to settle her back into a jazz-vocal heartland. Where Herbert is all effort, Martin is breezy, even masterful. She tackles what is quite a difficult range of material, from the dated elegance of the title track to the sass of "Jive" and "Love is a bore", and sews nearly everything up. It's a voice and a delivery that sounds experienced and toughened by a lot of work, without losing her bloom of succumbing to world-weariness - which, given that she's almost a veteran of her scene now, you could be forgiven for expecting. She flies through a chorus of "Cheek To Cheek" with only drums in support, and it calls to mind a boppers virtuosity, even though bopping it isn't really Claire's thing. On a softer entry such as "Where Do You Start?", she's lovely. And I can forgive her for taking a crack at something which really should be completely untouchable, June Christy's "Something Cool" - she does a fine job...

Jazz Review
01 November 2004