As piano jazz seems to recreate and rejuvenate its reputation from artist to artist, project-to-project, the craft is at times littered with numerous innovative styles. The channel down the ivories for a dedicated performer should be an adventure not only in enhancing ones talent but also to revel in delight with each stroke of a key. This is obliviously clear when you characterize Lisa Hilton, who is the quintessential vibrant and flamboyant sculpture of keyboard pleasure. As Ms. Hilton unveils her new project in 2005 My Favorite Things, she confirms her lust for mixing and arranging delightful tones.
From the first push-n-play, the Hilton encounter in diverse ivory jazz captures ones curiosity. The arranging and melodies are acute in formation and offer sound imagery to even the apprentice fan. As stunning as the artist herself, the insight as to choice of selection to technique of performance has grasped the all-jazz insiders once more. My Favorite Things does not disappoint.
To say Ms. Hilton converses to her audience with her compositions is an understatement as she guides them through countless sensations with her resonance. This is magnified much more so with the talented producer Al Schmitt paving the way on My Favorite Things. Of note to capture is the melodic sax work of Eric Marienthal, who in the title cut "My Favorite Things," takes the standard to a new level.
The hypnotic and erotic sounds from the Hilton original "Midnight Sky" unleash moments of grandeur for the listener. The sultry tones of the sax along with the Bergman skins lets loose mental descriptions that makes it so very exclusive for the listener. This is a very cool cut!
Another cut that is a must spin is the Hilton original "Thinking of You," which in some ways defines Ms. Hilton both on a personal and professional level. Angelic tones and soft intro has the keys with the gentle hidden feel of the sax, sneaking in on the audience’s pleasure. A romantic ballad that will make the mood in any venue for that evening of jazz!
One can only image how Ms Hilton can and will expand her focus and talents in coming recordings. Overall the entire project is very well designed and unifies itself with the jazz fan. This is a fine piece of jazz sounds and passion layered from cut to cut.
My Favorite Things needs to be yours.