Helen Merrill - The Nearness of You (Bonus Track Version) (1958/2016)

Helen Merrill - The Nearness of You (Bonus Track Version) (1958/2016)

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FLAC (tracks), Lossless / Mp3 320 kbps | 01:15:01 | 174 / 326 Mb

Alternately breathy and atmospheric or bright and dynamic, Helen Merrill often reaches a bit too far on The Nearness of You, though her distinct style and strong personality may be refreshing to vocal fans tired of the standard versions of standards. Leading two separate sextets -- the rather more famous one, with Bill Evans, Bobby Jaspar, Oscar Pettiford, and Jo Jones, appears on only four tracks -- Merrill breezes over a raft of mid-tempo standards, with several detours through high-drama territory. Her powerful voice occasionally gets her into trouble, breaking from breathy to brash and often occupying a rather awkward middle ground. Still, her ebullient tone and playful way with "Bye, Bye Blackbird," "Let Me Love You," and "All of You" is a treat to hear, and flutist Mike Simpson cuts it up behind her as well. Merrill really shines on the darker material, with just a plucked bass to accompany her on "Softly, As in a Morning Sunrise," and a similarly spare accompaniment on a long, drawn-out tribute to "Summertime" and "I See Your Face Before Me."
01. Helen Merrill - Bye Bye Blackbird
02. Helen Merrill/Bill Evans - When the Sun Comes Out (feat. Bill Evans)
03. Helen Merrill - I Remember You
04. Helen Merrill - Softly, As in a Morning Sunrise
05. Helen Merrill - Dearly Beloved
06. Helen Merrill - Summertime
07. Helen Merrill/Bill Evans - All of You (feat. Bill Evans)
08. Helen Merrill/Bill Evans - I See Your Face Before Me (feat. Bill Evans)
09. Helen Merrill/Bill Evans - Let Me Love You (feat. Bill Evans)
10. Helen Merrill/Bill Evans - The Nearness of You (feat. Bill Evans)
11. Helen Merrill/Bill Evans - This Time the Dream's on Me (feat. Bill Evans)
12. Helen Merrill/Bill Evans - Just Imagine (feat. Bill Evans)
13. Helen Merrill - The Blues (From Black, Brown & Beige) [Bonus Track]
14. Helen Merrill - Am I Blue? (Bonus Track)
15. Helen Merrill - Blue Gardenia (Bonus Track)
16. Helen Merrill - You've Got a Date with the Blues (Bonus Track)
17. Helen Merrill - The Thrill Is Gone (Bonus Track)
18. Helen Merrill - When the World Was Young (Bonus Track)
19. Helen Merrill - Blues in My Heart (Bonus Track)
20. Helen Merrill - Vous M'eblouissez (You Got to My Head) [Bonus Track]
21. Helen Merrill - Lorsque Tu M'embrasses (Just Squeeze Me) [Bonus Track]
22. Helen Merrill - The Meaning of the Blues (Bonus Track)
23. Helen Merrill - Signing Off (Bonus Track)

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