Sarah Marie Young: Expressive (2009)
Expressive's tracks demonstrate considerable variety, from tempo to time signature to style. "Goodbye To You and Me," a loping jazz waltz, features Young's sensitive and relaxed swing feel, while her pinpoint accurate Portuguese propels the quick-paced Brazilian tune, "O Pato." Throughout, Young strikes a beautiful balance between Gretchen Parlato's controlled nuance and Jimmy Rushing's full-throated hollering.
Young's rhythm section is a substantial part of why these selections gel together so well, laying into a particularly deep groove on "Winter Song." Often times laying a backdrop, the members of the trio do take turns in the spotlight, with guitarist Rob Block standing out. In addition, pianist Tom Vaitsas saves "Amazing Grace" from becoming a cursory appeal to popular nationalism, instead turning it into a serious set-closer.
Young's voice and her percussion-less rhythm section reach a level of propulsion not achieved by many groups with a drummer. It will be intriguing to see if Young includes drums or percussion in her future recording projects.
Track Listing: Goodbye To You and Me; O Pato; Born To Be Blue; Autumn Nocturne; Winter Song; Amazing Grace.
Personnel: Sarah Marie Young: vocals; Rob Block: guitar, Tom Vaitsas: piano, organ; Matt Young: bass.
Record Label: Self Produced