Madeleine Peyroux

Half the Perfect World [rounder]

Music Reviews Madeleine Peyroux
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Madeleine Peyroux

For better or worse, jazz vocalist Madeleine Peyroux won’t ever outgrow the Billie Holiday comparisons, despite her crooning claim, “I’m not looking backward for something that’s gone” (“Once in a While”). But looking backward is precisely where Peyroux camps, from her lounge-jazz sound to her choice of covers: Joni Mitchell (“River,” a duet with k.d. lang), Leonard Cohen (“Blue Alert” and the title track) and Serge Gainsbourg (“La Javanaise”). Only a tender take on Tom Waits’ “(Looking For) The Heart of a Saturday Night” gives Peyroux the glimmer of modernity Perfect World so desperately craves.

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