All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review


Mem Nahadr: Femme Fractale - An Opera of Reflection

James Nadal By

Sign in to view read count
Music genre categorization has exploded into so many fragments, that shrapnel is strewn in all directions as far as the ear can hear. In examining the vast minefield of definition for a proper description of the music of Mem Nahadr, we excavate the terms "neo-soul meets free-jazz," in hopes of further reference. Blessed with an operatic vocal range and fathomless ability of expression, Nahadr is an ever evolving artist on a constantly progressive and perpetual trajectory and Femme Fractale -An Opera of Reflection, is a complex production of aural textures yielding to a soothing backdrop of possibilities.

As with her highly regarded 2009 release "Eclecticism," and her mesmerizing live performances, this record pushes the boundaries of where vocalization can go. With no lack of material, and clocking in at over seventy-five minutes, Nahadr sets this up as a consciousness streaming opera, arranged in overlapping arias, with a profound sense of trendy groove. Utilizing all the modern studio tools at her disposal, she, along with producer/sound guru James P. Nichols, have managed to keep a secure hold on the spirit of the songs all the while enveloping them in layers of carefully adapted technological notions.

With seamless transitions from dance trance in "Grey Aria," to the mysterious "Underground," and into a light hearted "On My Merry Way," Nahadr follows a flowing current of measured tempos and mystical lyrics, which she abstractly displays as her interstitial philosophy. "Gone," sets up a deep urban groove, then in a total change of direction "Panacea," is a melodic romantic floater, presenting her multi-dimensional approach to songwriting. "Black Whole," brings out flashes of desperation cloaked in blinding optimism. She pours out the pulsing hypnotism which is her trademark in "M Theory," and wraps it up with "Passage," as her quest continues into realms yet unexplored.

This aptly named 'Opera of Reflection' is a determined and energetic project, depicting how positive energy can be channeled into music that is palatable yet vanguard, and realized with a cosmic message of confidence. Mem Nahadr is very much the modern woman who is savoring her role as a visionary artist, creating futuristic music for a contemporary audience that appreciates the effort it takes to accomplish something so imaginative.

Track Listing: Forge In Dreams; Grey Aria; Underground; On My Merry Way; Baby Know; Gone; Panacea; Crystal Trail; Black Whole; M Theory; Passage.

Personnel: Mem Nahadr: vocals; Christopher Hall: bass; Aron Marchak: guitar; Alex Violette: keyboards, flute, sax; Shyn – Digg: guitar; Jesse D. Martin: guitar; Curt Wright: drums; Quynton Wright: programming; Kenneth Wright: programming.

Title: Femme Fractale - An Opera of Reflection | Year Released: 2015 | Record Label: Self Produced


Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read Peaks of Light CD/LP/Track Review
Peaks of Light
by Mark Sullivan
Published: March 18, 2018
Read In Denmark I Was Born CD/LP/Track Review
In Denmark I Was Born
by Gareth Thompson
Published: March 18, 2018
Read Dreams of Belonging CD/LP/Track Review
Dreams of Belonging
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: March 18, 2018
Read In Copenhagen - Live at Jazzhus Slukefter 1983 CD/LP/Track Review
In Copenhagen - Live at Jazzhus Slukefter 1983
by Chris Mosey
Published: March 18, 2018
Read A Year Ago Today CD/LP/Track Review
A Year Ago Today
by Doug Collette
Published: March 18, 2018
Read Ravensburg CD/LP/Track Review
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: March 17, 2018
Read "Neko" CD/LP/Track Review Neko
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: May 25, 2017
Read "Lucus" CD/LP/Track Review Lucus
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: January 22, 2018
Read "Lionsong" CD/LP/Track Review Lionsong
by David A. Orthmann
Published: April 18, 2017
Read "Sunset" CD/LP/Track Review Sunset
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: September 1, 2017
Read "Borrowed Time" CD/LP/Track Review Borrowed Time
by Troy Dostert
Published: August 15, 2017
Read "Wobbly Dance Flower" CD/LP/Track Review Wobbly Dance Flower
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: September 22, 2017