The self-titled album debut of Zaz is one of the more exciting French revelations of 2010, boasting a refreshingly unique gypsy jazz style as well as plenty of contemporary pop appeal. Thirty years old at the time of her solo album debut, Zaz is a seasoned vocalist with years of experience as a performer, and her vocals are indeed a wonder to behold. She's a talented jazz vocalist, for sure, and her resemblance to Edith Piaf is striking. In addition to her singing, Zaz is a gifted songwriter credited with either writing or co-writing six of the 11 songs on her debut album. French pop star Raphaël is credited with writing three of the remaining songs, "La Fée," "Port Coton," and "Éblouie par la Nuit," and Kerredine Soltani is credited with writing the standout lead single, "Je Veux." Moreover, Raphaël is credited with producing four songs on the album: the three that he wrote, plus "Trop Sensible." Alban Sautour, Germain Guyot, and Soltani are also credited with production, and their work is commendable. The gypsy jazz style of the album is tastefully produced, never sounding retro or clichéd and, more importantly, never taking anything away from Zaz herself. Moreover, the contributions of four different producers makes for a diverse sound, with the Raphaël songs in particular standing out from the others. Clocking in at 11 songs in 39 minutes, Zaz doesn't overstay its welcome and leaves you craving more after the awe-inspiring closing track by Raphaël, "Éblouie par la Nuit." Impressive from all standpoints, Zaz is a strong contender for French pop revelation of the year.
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AllMusic Review by Jason Birchmeier