domenica 26 gennaio 2014


Zara McFarlane’s debut album, 2011’s Until Tomorrow, came garlanded with rave reviews and a MOBO award nomination, and heralded a major new talent in the world of British jazz. The follow-up, also recorded for Gilles Peterson’s Brownswood Recordings, is a more ambitious collection that draws from many more influences: from the deep spiritual jazz of Pharoah Sanders to dub and reggae.“With the first album,” says Zara, “I was trying to create a cohesive sound, one that used the same line up and the same instrumentation throughout. This time the focus is on the songwriting, and the arrangements are tailor-made to suit each song. There’s a lot more variation – around half of the tracks are duets, and I use more than one band. If there is a unified, cohesive theme, it’s in the lyrics: the songs represent a journey through a woman’s life.”Gilles Peterson has been a key figure in Zara’s career. They first met when she was performing with the house music project Bopstar at the Southport Weekender in May 2010, where she gave him an EP of acoustic jazz songs she’d recorded. Within a few months, an impressed Peterson had signed Zara to his Brownswood Recordings label, and that EP eventually provided the basis for her debut album Until Tomorrow.“Gilles has been an incredibly enthusiastic person to work with,” says Zara. “With the first album, I’d recorded most of it before he’d signed me, but this time he’s been more involved in its creation and made suggestions. He’s passionate about all kinds of music, not just jazz, which has allowed me to experiment with different sounds.” ZARA MC FARLANE

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