Feathers travels a different road than Jeanette Lindström's previous albums. Whereas earlier releases had her sounding like an Afro American singer with overtones of Abbey Lincoln and Diane Reeves, her newest is introspective and soft. There is no hint of soul, R & B or anything resembling an up tempo pace. This change of rhythms may have something to do with the label. Her earlier recordings were with the Caprice label which has featured African/Middle Eastern music. Sweden's Prophone, on the other hand, not only records jazz, but classical as well making it a bit more conservative. It may also have something to do with her fellow performer. Steve Dobrogosz's compositions and recordings are calm and collected as the listener will find out since there are four of his tunes on the 13 tune play list. His songs are also characterized by disconsolate, and in one case, cruel lyrics ("So I reached out to rub off its color, break its small body and pull off its wings" on "Butterfly".) Then there's the not so appealing conclusion that "Love Makes you Suffer". Maybe there's an allegory here somewhere which I'm missing. Even tunes that one normally hears played if not in quick, at least in medium tempos, are offered in unusually slow measures.
But there are gems here as well. One of the few Joni Mitchell tunes that gets my attention, "Both Sides Now", has an ethereal quality about it with Lindström's voice floating above the Mozart sonata like piano of Dobrogosz. The Andy Williams big hit "Moon River" starts with a lengthy Dobrogosz introduction which changes the phrasing and accents of this tune giving it a much different play than Williams'. Lindström sings the hopeful lyrics with an appropriate feeling of longing.
Every now and then, one needs to take down an album from the shelf if for nothing else, than as a proper backdrop for quiet times. You could do a lot worse than purchasing this CD for that purpose.
Track Listing: Butterfly; Never Let Me Go; The Look of Love; Love Makes You Suffer; Both Sides, Now; My Hands; Almost Blue; Like Water; Moon River; To Whom It May Concern; Future Window; You Are There; Deep Space
I love jazz because it swings.
I was first exposed to jazz in Houston.
I met Joe LoCascio and Bob Henschen.
The best show I ever attended was Pat Martino.
The first jazz record I bought was Time Out by the Dave Brubeck Quartet.
My advice to new listeners is to relax on 2 and 4 beats.