Lenni Jabour Live

Lenni Jabour's recent live recording proves that compelling songwriting and a spirited delivery are at the core of most great pop records. This ten-song set, culled from an evening at Toronto's C'est What in December, features a string trio that beautifully performs Jabour's own arrangements. Her cabaret piano style and unmistakable voice define the gripping "Monday, Jane" and the "Norwegian Wood"-esque "Closest." Though her voice often wavers, by the climax of "Ruby" I can imagine the audience completely enthralled by her passionate singing, hanging on her every last phrase. (Independent)