Krista Detor

Chocolate Paper Suites

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Krista Detor has developed into an artist of rare ability, and this album finds her firing on all cylinders. There's no lack of ambition here, either in the concept (five suites, each comprised of three thematically linked songs) or execution. As a wordsmith she can be both playful and profound with a deep poetic gift. As a musician, her piano playing might not win prizes, but she can write hellishly good songs, with minor keys that can tear at the emotions. There's plenty of emotional range here, and at times, her singing has the low, husky quality of a Lisa Germano (no bad thing). Anyone who can tackle Lorca, Dylan Thomas, and Darwin on the same album has plenty going for her intellectually, too. It's a disc with many highlights, but one that stands out is a live performance of "Clock of the World" where she's backed by three Scottish folk singers, and together the harmonies are, quite simply, angelic and perfect. The song itself might be a collection of strange images, but somehow, they're just right and convey the feel on one level, even if it's never concrete. In some odd, mystical way, Chocolate Paper Suites is just about perfect. Throughout the album, there's plenty of melody, and an achingly warm voice that puts the cherry on the cake of the talent. It's rare to say that a CD is so good it deserves to make the artist famous, but that is certainly the case with this.

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