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Mary Jenson: Beyond (2012)

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Mary Jenson: Beyond Track review of "Temptation"

How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.

Vocalist Mary Jenson follows her well-received 2009 recording Close Your Eyes (Self Produced) with an homage to the dream state with Beyond. Coming from a large military family that never stayed put for long, Jenson developed a gypsy's soul and a musical taste for the world rhythmic and cosmopolitan. Her song selection is novel, including compositions by The Beatles
The Beatles
The Beatles

band/orchestra
("Come Together"), Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder
Stevie Wonder
b.1950
keyboard
("Too High") and Joni Mitchell
Joni Mitchell
Joni Mitchell
b.1943
vocalist
("Moon at the Window").

But it is the opener, Tom Waits
Tom Waits
Tom Waits
b.1949
vocalist
' "Temptation," that really captures Jenson's world music-jazz view. Pianist Frank Martin sets up swirling smoke over the poly-rhythms of drummer Will Kennedy and uber-percussionist Alex Acuna. The arrangement is light, with moments of inventive melodic grounding firmly in in the warm climes of the Caribbean rim. Jenson's pliable voice shares these characteristics of the arrangement. She transforms this Waits ballad (sung to great humid effect by Cote de Pablo in the opening episode of NCIS, Season 6). Jenson takes away some of the humidity and adds complex undulations, giving the piece a more urgent and visceral punch.

Personnel: Mary Jenson: vocals; Frank Martin: keyboards; Mads Tolling: violin; Jose Neto: guitar; Ralphe Armstrong: bass; Will Kennedy: drums; Alex Acuna: percussion.

Record Label: Self Produced


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