Zara McFarlane: If You Knew Her (2014)
McFarlane's voice swells to the challenge of sparse instrumentation. She capitalizes on the music's pulse, that necessary element propelling this collection of sweetly opaque songs forward. On "Move" McFarlane sings of motion and strength among uncertainty, motion provided by the shimmer of Edwards' right melodic hand tacked down by his precise left. The sole non-original composition is Junior Murvin's 1977 "Police & Thieves," later covered by the Clash. McFarlane takes the song far afield of Murvin's original Jah-happy rebellion and the Clash's boiling mercury version into the blended jazz-soul terrain of 21st Century London. A gentle heart is Zara McFarlane's, one that burns in a low smolder of creation.
Track Listing: Open Heart; Her Eyes; Move; You’ll Get Me In Trouble; Police & Thieves; Spinning Wheel; Plain Gold Ring; Angie La La; The Games We Played; Woman in the Olive Groves; Love.
Personnel: Zara McFarlane: vocals (all), piano (6), guitar (4); Peter Edwards: piano (2, 3, 5, 9, 10, 11); Gavin Barras: Bass (1, 8); Max Luthert: bass (2, 3, 5, 7, 10); Moses Boyd: drums (3, ; Andy Chapman: drums (2, 10); Taz Modi: drums (8); Binker Golding: tenor saxophone (10); Leron Thomas: trumpet (8); Rachel Gladwin: harp (8).
Record Label: Brownswood Recordings