7

Joyce Moreno: Cool

C. Andrew Hovan By

Sign in to view read count
Since the late '60s, Brazilian guitarist and singer Joyce Moreno has been one of the most iconic members of the MPB movement, pushing the envelope way past the traditional bossa novas of Jobim. In the early '80s, albums such as Feminina and brought Joyce an international following that she continues to enjoy to this day. Her sizeable catalog features a diverse collection of original material, not to mention key collaborations with such heavyweights as Jon Hendricks, Joao Donato, Kenny Werner, Sivuca, and many others.

For the most part, Joyce sings in her native Portuguese, but is known to deliver a song or two in English on occasion. Having spent a time in the United States, she recorded two albums in the early '90s for Verve that featured a smattering of tunes sung in English. In 1995, she released the album Delirios De Orfeu, which featured the jazz standards "Speak Low" and "There's a Small Hotel." These few precursors would only hint at the approach she has taken to her newest offering, a set of all jazz standards sung exclusively in English.

Sparsely accompanied by pianist Helio Alves, bassist Rodolfo Stroeter, and drummer Tutty Moreno, Joyce tackles a dozen Tin Pan Alley and vintage jazz classics all in her inimitable style. Three Cole Porter trinkets make the cut, namely "Love for Sale," "Let's Do It," and "You Do Something to Me." On the jazzier side, there's Monk's "'Round Midnight," "Invitation," and "My Favorite Things." Much in keeping with its title, there's a relaxed and seductive vibe to the entire set that is undeniably beguiling.

Joyce is at the forefront of these arrangements with her understated guitar and vocals, although Alves get a chance to step out a few times. A particularly jaunty version of "Cool" from West Side Story demonstrates the pianist's tasteful accompaniment and includes a crystalline solo moment as well. Particularly musical and tender, Tutty's finger taps on his drum kit add character to the usually corny "Fever." Another threadbare pop tune, "Day-O (The Banana Boat Song)," rises above the mundane with some great harmonics by bassist Stroeter.

Wordless vocals are utilized on "'Round Midnight," "My Favorite Things" and the Joyce original "Mingus, Miles, & Coltrane" to great effect. Multi-tracking and additional voices establish a rich and profound vibe on "Nature Boy" as Joyce improvises over Alves' piano riff. A seductive and reflective "Moon River" closes out the set with singer and her guitar acapella. Although definitely a departure from her usual modus operandi, Cool can easily hold its own among Joyce's singularly expressive and impressive body of work.

Track Listing: Love for Sale; Fever; Cool; Day-O (The Banana Boat Song); Let's Do It; 'Round Midnight; Invitation; The Shadow of Your Smile; Mingus, Miles & Coltrane; You Do Something to Me; Nature Boy; My Favorite Things; Moon River.

Personnel: Joyce Moreno: vocals & guitar; Tutty Moreno: drums & percussion; Helio Alves: piano; Rodolfo Stroeter: bass.

Title: Cool | Year Released: 2016 | Record Label: Far Out Recordings


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Alto Gusto CD/LP/Track Review Alto Gusto
by Jack Bowers
Published: November 20, 2017
Read Flow CD/LP/Track Review Flow
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: November 20, 2017
Read Originals For the Originals CD/LP/Track Review Originals For the Originals
by Paul Rauch
Published: November 20, 2017
Read Killing Bugs CD/LP/Track Review Killing Bugs
by Kevin Press
Published: November 20, 2017
Read The Way of It CD/LP/Track Review The Way of It
by Jack Bowers
Published: November 19, 2017
Read Tag Book CD/LP/Track Review Tag Book
by Jakob Baekgaard
Published: November 19, 2017
Read "Do Not Go Gently" CD/LP/Track Review Do Not Go Gently
by Ian Patterson
Published: July 19, 2017
Read "The Bug" CD/LP/Track Review The Bug
by Jack Bowers
Published: August 20, 2017
Read "Heavy Dance" CD/LP/Track Review Heavy Dance
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: March 14, 2017
Read "True Love Collection" CD/LP/Track Review True Love Collection
by Roger Farbey
Published: November 24, 2016
Read "Il sistema periodico" CD/LP/Track Review Il sistema periodico
by Nicola Negri
Published: March 27, 2017
Read "The Wild" CD/LP/Track Review The Wild
by Jerome Wilson
Published: March 15, 2017

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Please support out sponsor