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Metro 7th Jan 2011
7 Jan 2011

Guitarist Keeps Her Finger on the Pulse

The beat-en track: Sarah Gillespie begins a nationwide tour tonight to promote her latest album

References to hot topics such as uranium enrichment are sadly thin on the ground in contemporary jazz. But there’s plenty of lyrical grit on the immersive second album from Sarah Gillespie, In The Current Climate (Pastiche Records). The singer/guitarist’s debt to 1960s Greenwich Village folkies is evident not just in her politics but also in her Beat-like verbal collages (‘Cinnamon ginseng bootleg bourbon Calvados Berlin’) and beautifully controlled associative word strings, all delivered with her distinctive vocal mixture of dark romanticism and punkish attitude. If, lyrically, Gillespie occasionally slips over the line into boho pastiche, the song arrangements are never less than fresh and engaging, thanks partly to the witty contributions of her principal accompanist, Gilad Atzmon. Gillespie begins a tour tonight and is well worth catching live.

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