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Reviewers: Tony Augarde [Editor], Steve Arloff, Nick Barnard, Pierre Giroux, Don Mather, James Poore, Glyn Pursglove, George Stacy, Bert Thompson, Sam Webster, Jonathan Woolf



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AIMÉE ALLEN

Matter of Time

AZULINE NO NUMBER

 

 

Matter of Time

Soul Cargo

My Romance

The Island

Close Your Eyes

New Day

Sometimes I Just Know

Out of Nowhere

Qu’est-ce qu’on est bien ici

In the Name of Love

Corcovado

The Space Between

Matter of Time.


Aimée Allen (vocals): Romero Lubambo (guitar 1, 4, 9, 11):: Toru Dodo (piano and Fender Rhodes 2, 3 – 8, 10, 12, 13): François Moutin (bass 2, 3 – 8, 10, 12, 13): Scott Ritchie (bass 1): Jacob Melchior (drums 2, 3 – 8, 10, 12, 13)

Recorded June 2013, PPI Recording and May 2014, Acoustic Recording [56:55]


Here’s a thoughtful vocal album from Aimée Allen whose skill in composing music and crafting lyrics can be heard throughout this disc. Accompaniment is limited to piano, bass and drums, though on four of the 13 tracks guitarist Romero Lubambo makes his presence felt.

He supports Aimée, along with Scott Ritchie (his only appearance on bass) in the first track, Matter of Time, an original by the singer, where the Latin vibe infiltrates the song and the clever lyrics and use of repetition and rhyme at an up-tempo, prove enticing. The athletic bass playing of François Moutin and the articulate percussion patterns established by Jacob Melchior are components of the success of this tight ensemble in the remainder of the album, whilst the singer shows some affinities with Ella Fitzgerald but keeps the scatting down to a relative minimum. Close Your Eyes gets an interpretation very far from languorous. Instead there’s an adventurous approach where Moutin’s quotes naughtily and trades with drummer Melchior. Meanwhile the singer’s phrases lap eagerly over each like waves. So it’s welcome to reach the haven of a ballad in the shape of Sometimes You Just Know, a sensitive original. Her approach to standards is bracing and bright – Out of Nowhere, for instance – and writing and singing in French presents no obstacle at all; take a listen to Qu’est-ce qu’on est bien.

She even takes Pat Metheny’s The Space Between and adds lyrics to it (quite successfully) before ending the disc with a reprise of the opening song, only this time in an arrangement for the full quartet. Variety of tune, tempo, backing, languages; these are some of the facets that make up this pleasing album.

Jonathan Woolf



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