by "Rotcod Zzaj" Dick Metcalf
Andrea Wolper - THE SMALL HOURS:
Pay attention to the CD title, and as soon as you hear the first few bars, you'll "get" the picture Andrea is painting with her sultry vocals... I remember many early morning cruises through downtown late-night streets & jazz bars (in Frankfurt, Germany) that had singers in smoky rooms like Ms. Wolper's beautiful voice brings back to memory. Track 2, "You and the Night and the Music", takes me into slightly different streets... still dark, but with smoke rising out of hookahs, rather than expensive cigarettes & cocktails.... very "eastern" rhythms on this one. My favorite cut on the album is an original from Andrea, titled "Gray, Not Blue"... though you'll find strong blue in the cut, to be sure. Once she starts her vocal on this one, you won't be able to escape... except into th' "down" atmosphere she draws you into; very laid-back environment that will make you feel it! If you want a relaxing, yet highly inspired, bluesy interlude (that will stay in your collection for many years to come), this one comes MOST HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.