Jeanne Newhall

Conscience

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With the release of Novice in 1988, Jeanne showed a piano clarity that made her a favorite for certain afternoon moods and places that asked for a simplicity of expression. As a result, her second effort, Conscience, was expected to do the same. However, from the understated tabla track to her vocalese/tape loop "transmissions," this is quite a departure. And there were three more vocals throughout the remainder of the album, from a lounge sound to more contemporary phrasings. Where there weren't vocals, synthesizer parts played off the piano and all kinds of backup, from congas to fretless bass, guitar, English horn, and even sax on one cut. The 16-minute epic journey of "Finger Painting" nearly made up for all the rest.

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