Written by: Kev Rowland
This is Gabriele’s fourth album, and here she is accompanied by her husband Joe on piano, Carlo de Rosa on bass, drummer Vince Cerico and percussionist Renato Thoms. While Jo carries the melody line, and the bass keeps everything pinned down, both drums and percussion are moving all over the place as they create a South American bossa nova feel to much of what is taking place. Gabriele is German-born, lives in America, is influenced by Parisian style singers, yet produces jazz with a very Brazilian feel, quite an eclectic mix.
‘Of Sailing Ships And The Stars In Your Eyes’ is something that strains to be more than it actually is, as there are times when Gabriele’s vocals are just very slightly off, or shortened due to an apparent lack of breath, which makes me wonder if this was recorded live in the studio. The album was recorded in just four days in 2016, so that could well be the case, and it might have been better if more time and care had been taken. I am well aware that she has gained high praise for her vocals over the years, so perhaps it is just that I feel she is trying too hard at times – I hold very similar views on Mariah Carey, and look how many millions feel she is wonderful. This mix of jazz and South American rhythms plus her vocals just isn’t for me I’m afraid.
Island Dreams // Autumn in New York // Bossa Ballad and Blue // Straphangin // Je Crois Entendre Encore // O Morro Nao Tem Vez // Of Sailing Ships and the Stars in Your Eyes // Meglio Stasera // Vera Cruz // Ein Alter Tibetteppich // Slow Hot Wind // A Song for India