“Catalina” is cut from Gillian Glover’s forthcoming album Still Life with Music, the follow-up to her acclaimed 2007 debut Red Handed. Side-stepping the blues-inflected rock of that first record, Gillian and her band achieve a subtly eclectic sound fusing influences from the Mediterranean, South America and West Africa to create a uniquely mature record that is by turns buoyant and bewitchingly introspective. This music is warm and welcoming, enveloping you with its glow. “Sigh, sigh, Catalina”, Gillian sings in the opening line of a song invoking rivers and sea, painting a scene that audibly breathes, ebbing and flowing at the behest of the moon. In the video Gillian sings with alacrity in English and Spanish to a lady of exceptional beauty, her voice wafting mellifluously through the streets of Shoreditch and a Berkshire meadow where she glides, carefree. A highlight of “Catalina” is Sim Jones’s empathic violin solo, taking us on a Balkan-Gypsy ride that simply thrills, while the simmering rhythm section sustains the acoustic Bossa-Mozambique at a smilingly good, just-right tempo.

This song typifies much of Gillian Glover’s oeuvre to date. Like some of the finest recorded moments of Lucinda Williams (“World Without Tears”) or Alison Krauss (“Dimming of the Day”), it is both introspective and selfless, embodying an irresistible generosity. Others songs on Still Life with Music are studies in space, such as the delicately heart-wrenching “When It’s Over” in which Gillian ponders love lost as if in a movie. Anyone familiar with her live shows – thus far confined to the European continent – or the more tender moments (“Go”, “Singing You to Sleep”) from Red Handed, will know the depth and intimacy of the sound that Gillian and her band conjur. On “Catalina” they are carefree, confident and alluring:

“Catalina” video

 

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