New Moon Daughter
Limited vinyl LP pressing of the jazz vocalist’s 1995 album. Her luscious alto has the depth and texture of a great tenor saxophonist, but Cassandra Wilson's defining asset is a post-modern song sense that enables her to surf through Son House, Neil Young, Johnny Mercer, Billie Holiday, and (gasp!) the Monkees in pursuit of strong songs that can provide that instrument with a canvas. Her second Blue Note album extends Wilson's seductive pilgrimage beyond the conventions of jazz repertoire and accompaniment, yet it's her instincts as a jazz singer that inform these brilliant readings. The settings again step away from traditional small group jazz (for starters, there's no piano) to evoke the emotional core of these songs. Anyone who can turn the Monkees' "Last Train to Clarksville" into a slow-burning erotic vignette deserves your attention.