Round & Shiny Choose Wisely, and Other Recommendations
June 01, 2006
Having won the admiration of hipster oracle Nic Harcourt (of public-radio bellwether KCRW) and mainstream icon Dolly Parton, as well as Richard Glasser, the music supervisor for Best Picture contender Crash, eclectic chanteuse Quincy Coleman is bound to win a flock of new admirers with her exquisitely rendered sophomore disc, Come Closer. Coleman stakes a musical claim far off the beaten path courtesy of a cinematic sonic goulash that embraces Beale Street trumpet bleats, Parisian plaints, speakeasy slink, gin-soaked rumba, Hot Club banjo and high-lonesome heartbreak. Best of all, her dusky delivery navigates the shifting territory with aplomb. Coleman's feel for the swoony tropes of yesteryear at times recalls Maria Muldaur and Van Dyke Parks, though her voice is closer to the knowing, rootsy timbre of Shelby Lynne. Still, Coleman is no mere musicologist; the razor-sharp arrangements always serve the emotional thrust of tunes like the ragtime-gospel gem "Mary," the rousing, Carole King-by-way-of-Tin Pan Alley ditty "Take a Chance" and the revival-tent shuffle "Don't Go Away," which, I swear, have been hovering in the ether forever.
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