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Sarah Pillow: Remixes

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Album Review

With this release, vocalist Sarah Pillow embarks upon a musical path that is equal parts jazz and classical. On disc one of this two-CD set, Pillow performs Baroque music with a harpsichordist, organist, violinist, violist, and a lute performer. As she plays the music of Henry Purcell and other notables, the primary source of interest pertains to the jazz fusion-based remixes of the works featured on disc two. Pillow utilizes the prominent jazz/fusion bands Tunnels and Brand X for the remixes, which of course provides a direct contrast to the austere renditions evidenced on disc one. Regardless, Pillow possesses a crystalline vocal delivery with near faultless intonation, as this recording signifies an extension of her previous effort titled Nuove Musiche. Some jazz fusion or classical purists might dismiss this outing via the proverbial oil and water analogy. And whether the willing listener is a staunch classicist or jazz-rock aficionado, the musicians intimate quite a few entertaining propositions. A portion of this cross-genre-type game plan is founded upon Pillow's decision to overlay Baroque (17th century melodies) vocals atop John Goodsall's blistering fretwork and drummer Frank Katz' pulsating backbeats. On pieces such as "Audite Me," fretless bass wonder Percy Jones provides some dreamy lead lines amid synth swashes atop a dub/reggae slant. It all takes some getting used to, and from a strict marketing standpoint, Pillow seemingly has her work cut out for her. The remix portions of this offering sound a bit awkward and constrained at times, although Pillow's nouveau approach and willingness to take chances speaks volumes.


Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Sarah Pillow's skills as a vocal interpreter make her equally at home in classical and jazz styles. Her early performance experiences came participating in festivals like the Montreux Jazz Festival in Switzerland, but she also had a solid technical education at the Chautauqua Institution in New York and at the Oberlin Conservatory. After moving to New York, she began performing with a variety of settings from shows with the New York Philharmonic to tributes to John Cage to sets at the Knitting Factory....
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Sarah Pillow: Remixes, Sarah Pillow
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