Award winning singer-trumpeter Bria Skonberg has a fine voice and plays the trumpet with a pure toned virtuosic skill. She sounds like a big jazz star in the making and to an extent already is becoming one back home in Canada.
The material is another matter entirely. Leonard Cohen’s ‘Dance Me To The End of Love’ and Björk’s ‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ are overly familiar as are the cocktail jazz classic choices with the exception of the interesting Valaida Snow selection similarly, it isn’t all X Factor-like fodder by any means although even an Ed Sheeran cover makes the cut.
With a Twist is certainly highly accessible, undemanding, fun in places, supper club-friendly and resolutely middle of the road. The handsome sound is a plus, Gil Goldstein has done most of the skilled arrangements, Skonberg anchored by the perky rhythm section of Sullivan Fortner on piano, Scott Colley, bass, and Matt Wilson on drums.
If you want classic retro jazz vocals with quite a bit more meaning this is the wrong album for you so I’d suggest Skonberg’s fellow Canadian Diana Krall’s superb new album Turn Up The Quiet instead. Stick with Skonberg if you want something even more old fashioned.