Amanda Thorpe : Promenade

CD [Cover Art for Amanda Thorpe / Promenade] Your Price: $16.17
Availability: In Stock
Sell date: 1/2012
Label: Bongo Beat Records
Mfg's Catalog#: 2027
CDC Part#: 1629107
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 Notes & Reviews
Amanda Thorpe's prior work has already won her an enviable reputation for emotionally forthright performances and organically intimate, effortlessly accessible songcraft. With Promenade, her first new release in three years, the English-born, New York-based singer/songwriter/multi-instrumentalist raises the stakes and emerges with her most inspired and accomplished music yet. Such musically and emotionally resonant tunes as 'Bar Tabac,' 'Waking Up In Brooklyn' and 'Goodbye' exemplify Thorpe's moody melodicism, lyrical insight and bittersweetly evocative vocals. The latter song-appears on Promenade in a spare solo performance recorded in the artist's bedroom-showcases the intimate expressiveness of Thorpe's voice, which is the perfect vehicle for her songs' explorations of love and it's challenges. Thorpe's singing is equally persuasive on her uplifting reading of the Harold Arlen/Yip Harburg pop standard 'It's Only A Paper Moon,' whose message of romance and faith makes it an ideal match for her own compositions. The qualities that make Promenade so memorable will already be familiar to anyone familiar with Thorpe's prior work, which includes her acclaimed solo efforts Mass, Union Square, and Too Many Spirits, as well as her collaborative work as a member of the Wirebirds and the Bedsit Poets. 'Several of the songs' Thorpe observes, 'were inspired by various significant, but challenging relationships, and the struggles until some form or acceptance, or understanding is achieved. The title Promenade is from 'Bar Tabac' that refers specifcally to the Brooklyn Promenade, however, a lot of the other songs are set roaming around Manhattan, Central Park, and other places. The title also represents the contemplation, musings and wanderings of the mind.' Thorpe co-produced Promenade with seasoned studio pros Brad Albetta (Martha Wainwright, Teddy Thompson)-who also co-produced Union Square-, and Don Piper (Lilys, Silos, Bedsit Poets). The album also features songwriting collaborations with noted New York tunesmiths Philip Shelley and Craig Chesler, as well as Thorpe's Wirebirds bandmate Peter Stuart. In addition to Thorpe's own vocals, guitars, bass, and keyboards, she draws upon a stellar assortment of New York musicians, including guitarist Tony Scherr (renowned for his work with the likes of Norah Jones, Feist and Bill Frisell), bassist Rob Jost (Josh Ritter, Elizabeth & the Catapult) and keyboardist Matt Trowbridge (Bedsit Poets, Robbers on High Street). 'I almost titled this album Attend to Your Dreams,' Thorpe notes. 'Dreaming is important and necessary, something that shouldn't be lost or put aside amongst the trials and tribulations of life and romance. I have very vivid and active dreams, which can be exhausting, but I also went through a period of feeling like I had no day dreams and that was significantly worse. We all need hopes and dreams. They keep us alive.' REVIEW: Amanda Thorpe's Promenade: Stunning and Seductive by delarue, New York Music Daily Amanda Thorpe has been a somewhat more elusive presence in the New York music scene lately, but the British expat singer/multi-instrumentalist continues to put out tremendously captivating albums. Her new one, Promenade, is a little more melodically diverse, less overtly dark than her 2008 masterpiece Union Square. As usual, the vocals are astonishing. By turns seductive, aching and charming, Thorpe can still say more in a single wounded bent note (or a raw, soul-infused wail) than most singers can communicate in an entire album. This time around, although most of the songs here are more straight-up rock, she's followed her jazz muse into territory that most singers simply can't reach: it's not just a matter of chops, it's a matter of soul, and Thorpe has both. The attractiveness of the tunes often belies a darker undercurrent. Bar Tabac, which is essentially the title track, bleakly traces a woman's steps from Cobble Hill to the Brooklyn Promenade, daydrunk on bloody marys, alone and miserable, while the band swings along on a jaunty bossa nova bounce lit up by Ray Sapi

Monica Says
What Love Is
Bar Tabac
Waking Up in Brooklyn
Catching the Light
Attend to Your Dreams
Hey Hey Hey
Once Lovers
It's Only a Paper Moon
Bury It
Aloha, Bobby & Rose