With her bright tone and brilliant technique, CeCe Gable is an ideal interpreter of florid romantic standards, but she is equally adept at writing some of her own as “Next Year’s Song”, the piece on this album, suggests. What makes her interpretations so special is her atomised responses to the lyric. She responds to anguished sorties with mannerist touches. There is a balanced approach to high and low voices; a particular knack for nuanced management of vocal dynamic right down to the seductive whisper, when called for. Best of all, Miss Gable has style – the like of which makes for bittersweet theatre – the best kind, expected of a top tier vocalist.
Miss Gable’s voice is possessed of extraordinary luminosity. Plenty of singers may also be so endowed, but Miss Gable transforms quality of voice into a kind of spine-tingling elegance that is at once warmed by simplicity and unguarded melodic sweetness.
She pours all of this into her vocalastics on “Next Year’s Song”, sending its lyric past the stratosphere and into a rarefied realm full of dreamy joy that – even in the music’s minor variations that produce a pinch of bitter-sweetness in its dénouement – leaves the listener yearning for the hope in the future to come.
Each song is a gem of a selection and Miss Gable does complete justice t every one of the songs – from Harold Arlen and Johnny Mercer’s “Come Rain or Come Shine” to Alan Broadbent’s “From Me to You” and, of course, Harvie S’ and the vocalist’s own “Next Year’s Song”.
One of her most outstanding qualities as a vocalist is her marked sense of line. Moreover, Miss Gable has a remarkable ability to follow sudden contrasts. Her emphasis on a solid homogeneity of sound is achieved with superb flexibility. Thus, with everything going for her, these classics from film and stage come alive as if they were written just for her. Not only that, but the manner in which instrumental colour and shading is applied to this music suggests that the ensemble is fully attuned to every nuance of the singer’s vision and artistry. In fact, it seems as if the musicians and Miss Gable are joined at the proverbial hip.
Harvie S who co-produced this classic album is a master-craftsman at his chosen instrument, which he plays with almost insolent virtuosity. Even with these spare arrangement for quartet + voice, his music falls somewhere between “song” and “symphony”. Propelled by the rich toned gravitas of his contrabass, this music is also endowed by the elegance of Alan Broadbent’s pianism and the subtle colouration of Matt Wilson’s percussion, accented by the radiant hissing of his cymbals throughout.
Together the ensemble create lines that flow, charm and interact in an entirely natural, unaffected manner with Miss Gable’s vocals that glimmer with the emotion and an awesome sense of love and hope.
Track list – 1: Next Year’s Song; 2: No Moon at All; 3: Two for the Road; 4: Just One of those Things; 5: Like a Lover; 6: I’m Gonna Laugh You Right Out of My Life; 7: The Last Goodbye; 8: My Romance; Moments Like This; 8: Come Rain or Come Shine; 11: From Me to You
Released – 2022
Label – CC Gable, LLC
Runtime – 39:27