Take My Heart - Jazzwise

Claire Martin's bridge-building between jazz and adult pop is evident on most of her albums, but "Take My Heart" is arguably the most assured statement of it. Her richly expressive voice is set off by Paul Stacey's imaginative ensemble arrangements, several which incorporate a sympathetically used string section. Noel Gallagher's guest spot on Help may shift some extra copies, but the real achievement of the album lies in her treatment of songs such as Nick Drake's evocative Riverman, a brooding take on Only the Lonely, or the drum-less version of David Sylvain's Brilliant Trees. Don't look for her more swinging mode here, but her seductively honeyed treatments underline her ability to combine genres in satisfying fashion.

04 October 1999