Henri Matisse, the master of the use of color, said, "Art should be something like a good armchair in which to rest from physical fatigue." Melody Gardot's Sunset in the Blue: The Deluxe Version shows its mastery, in both the color of its cover design and the execution of its musicianship. Back in the day, Matisse got in trouble with some art critics for his simile. Some listeners might have a similar reaction to Melody's music, but not all. Gardot's tone is as comfortable as sitting in an armchair sipping good champagne or brandy. Maybe Decca issued The Deluxe Version for the brandy drinkers. In the original version she is partially or totally credited for writing nine of the thirteen songs with lush orchestrations.
The Deluxe Version adds acoustic versions of five tracks without the lush orchestrations. Leslie Duncan's "Love Song," in The Deluxe Version, counterpoints Gardot with Ibrahim Maalouf. An adult beverage will be even more enjoyable with the sound of his Middle Eastern trumpet and her honey-infused voice. Philippe Baden Powell adds a Brazilian/European/Bill Evans touch throughout both versions. Some songs qualify as the finest examples, to use the late Charlie Haden's album title, of The Art of the Song, particularly the opening track of both versions, "If You Love Me." But it is not the only one, just the one that stands out.
If You Love Me; C'est Magnifique; There Where He Lives in Me; Love Song; You Won't Forget Me; Sunset in the
Blue; Um Beijo; Ninguem, Ninguem; From Paris With Love; Ave Maria; Moon River; I Fall in Love Too Easily;
Little Something; From Paris with Love(acoustic); Love Song (Ibrahim Maalouf); Trav'lin' Light; What Is This
Thing Called Love; C'est Magnifique - Live in Namouche Studios - Antonio Zambujo