Brandi Disterheft Second Side

Brandi Disterheft Second Side
This young Toronto, ON-based bassist/composer turned heads by claiming a Juno Award in 2008 for her first album, Debut. Expect more acclaim for this superb sophomore outing. Disterheft ventures beyond the realm of mainstream contemporary jazz here, as shown by the choice of Rhys Fulber (Delirium) as producer (he also co-wrote four songs). Things begin conventionally enough with, haunting, lyrical opening track "Sketches Of Belief," something of a Miles Davis homage, then veer radically with the jaunty surf guitar meets mariachi meets French pop feel of "Combien de Chances." This is one of two compositions featuring convincingly breathy vocals from Disterheft, while she recruits Holly Cole and Ranee Lee for guest vocals on, respectively, roots-y pop tune "He's Walkin'" and bonus track "This Time The Dream's On Me," the only non-original here. Disterheft acknowledges the influences of Joni Mitchell and Milton Nascimiento, healthy inspirations indeed. The musicianship throughout is top-notch, with such noted horn players as William Carn, Chris Gale, Shawn Nyquist and William Sperandei featured. This enchanting disc may be too eclectic for the jazz purist but it deserves to find a wider audience. (Justin Time)