By Kira Grunenberg | Published May 2022
Before contemplating the creative sophistication and attention to detail Anna Laura Quinn brings to Open The Door, one can simply embrace the inherent delight of Quinn’s vocal timbre through the opening bars of “Talking To The Sun.” Bearing a vocal style that’s light and graceful with melodic transitions but, defined and clear in enunciation, there’s an old-fashioned charm to Quinn’s singing that feels like a perfect match for the vocal standard, classic vocal jazz, and even Disney-based repertoire on this album.
Still, don’t mistake this opening impression to mean Open The Door is limited on experiential reflection. Literally following the dainty Alice in Wonderland track “Very Good Advice” is Cole Porter’s risqué “Love For Sale.” The compositional contrast between this pair of songs allows Quinn to highlight how well her voice adapts to different melodic flows. Furthermore, specific aspects of Quinn’s arrangements — for example the a capella, harmonizing ooos in the former and the dynamic scat solo in the latter — bolster the ambiance of each song. Fitting as the finale, Frederick Loewe’s “Wouldn’t It Be Loverly,” truly opens the door to Quinn’s vision as an arranger.
Open The Door: Talking To The Sun; Comes Love; Speak Low; Very Good Advice; Love For Sale; Cry Again; Open The Door; The Single Petal Of A Rose; Wouldn’t It Be Loverly. (45:19)
Personnel: Anna Laura Quinn, vocals; Ed Barrett, guitar; Ben Fox, bass; Brad Webb, drums; Kate Campbell-Strauss, tenor saxophone, baritone saxophone; Brent Rose, flute, tenor saxophone.
Ordering Info: outsideinmusic.com/nextlevel-releases