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Mad Heaven by Peter Eldridge

Vocalist/pianist Peter Eldridge, perhaps best known for his work with the Grammy winning New York Voices, delivers a Latin-inspired collection of sleek songwriting with Mad Heaven, his first venture for Palmetto Records. Following in the footsteps of his critically acclaimed, self-produced 2005 release Decorum, Eldridge offers up sophisticated arrangements and clever, personalized lyrics, accompanied by a top notch crew of jazz sidemen.

Eldridge's music finds comfort in a variety of Brazilian grooves, incorporating highly-syncopated rhythms into his melodies, allowing for his prose to unfold quite naturally without an over-reliance on predictable verse-chorus formulas. The grey area of relationships, filled with ups-and-downs and mixed emotions seem to be the focus of Eldridge's preferred subject matter. His tales are most convincing on the propulsive title track, the lush "No Tomorrow" and the hopeful samba "Warm December," featuring powerful background vocals and fine tenor saxophone work from Darmon Meader."

Another tenor saxophonist, the multi-faceted Joel Frahm, is a welcome solo voice on a handful of tracks, including "Betty's Bossa (Chamego)," a stand-out track with infectious wordless vocalizing. The rhythm team of drummer Ben Wittman and bassist Tim LeFebvre are rock-solid throughout. Wittman demonstrates ultra-sensitivity accompanying Eldridge through the opening of Antonio Carlos Jobim's "Someone to Light Up My Life."

Mad Heaven showcases Eldridge as a major player in vocal jazz, revealing an artist of extraordinary depth and conviction.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Peter Eldridge
  • CD Title: Mad Heaven
  • Genre: Jazz Vocals
  • Year Released: 2011
  • Record Label: Palmetto Records
  • Rating: Four Stars
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