Top positive review
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To Know Her Is To Love Her
on 26 January 2014
Zara McFarlane deserves to be big. Very big indeed. Her 2011 debut 'Until
Tomorrow' was a stunner but there is considerable development evident
in her new album 'If You Knew Her'. It's all about the voice; a wonderfully
fluid and flexible instrument which hovers on the stave somewhere between
mezzo and soprano and possesses the most wonderful clarity and purity of tone.
Sympathetically supported by a crack ensemble, substantially carried by pianist
Peter Edwards, this collection of eleven numbers demonstrates beyond doubt
Ms McFarlane's vocal and interpretive skills in songs which would put many
more experienced singers to the test. For my money she's one of the best
new "jazz" voices on the block. Whether in the beautifully fragile and exposed
performance of 'You'll Get Me In Trouble'; the strange folksy harmonies and
impeccable diction of the magical 'Plain Gold Ring' and equally exposed and
enchanting 'The Games We Played'; or the stunningly simple but soulful
opening track 'Open Heart', she is never less than at the top of her game.
2014 suddenly feels like it's shifted up a gear with this stunning release.
Methinks it will be a good year for Ms McFarlane.