While it's clearly a pop album, Tangled has a light, jazzy feel. John Moulder's smooth jazz guitar, Steve Eisen's gentle flute and several keyboards back up Jackie Allen's lovely voice with an easy-to-like ambience. Allen delivers an expressive, convincing session. The singer uses her voice, whispery and coated with smooth silk, to interpret this program with a relaxed ease and subtle passion.
Allen leaves an enjoyable wake behind every song. Her eighth album, both contemporary and filled with an appreciation for personal forms of communication, is designed for broad audience appeal. Tangled, Allen's title song, features dramatic electric guitar and a deep blues sensation. "If I Had floats on a gentle bossa breeze, while "You're Nearer emphasizes the dramatic qualities of her expressive voice.
A vocalist should be comfortable with folk, country, pop, blues and jazz. With Tangled, we get a little bit of each. Slip features electric piano and a horn section in a soulful strut. "Hot Stone Soup and "Cold Grey Eyes provide reflections of New Age themes. Donald Fagen's "Do Wrong Shoes, the album's best track, provides an opportunity for Allen to swing.
As Randy Newman's "Living Without You closes the program with a country & western feel, you can't help absorbing Jackie Allen's emotional pull. She gives her audience a personal reflection of her inner soul that everyone can enjoy.
When Will I Ever Learn; Cold Grey Eyes; You
Jackie Allen: vocals; Steve Eisen: flute, tenor saxophone; Orbert Davis, trumpet; John Molder, guitar; Ben Lewis, piano, electric piano, organ; Laurence Hobgood, piano, electric piano; Hans Sturm, bass; Dane Richeson, drums, percussion; Yvonne Gage, Eric Hochberg, Suzanne Palmer, Sue Conway: background vocals.
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