The Book of Longing

The Book of Longing

Deepening her practice of setting poetry to song, the great Brazilian-born vocalist Luciana Souza partners here with a virtuosic string duo—guitarist Chico Pinheiro, bassist Scott Colley—for a program full of melodic inspiration and sonic precision. Souza’s overdubbed percussion snaps the music even more into focus, and Pinheiro’s solos are things of consistent beauty and technical brilliance. All of the music is Souza’s, but only three tracks feature her original lyrics; for the remainder, she summons inspiration from Edna St. Vincent Millay, Emily Dickinson, Christina Rossetti, and, most of all, Leonard Cohen. In terms of texture and feel, these poets send the trio to varied places, from the balladic grace of “Alms” to the vibrant tempo of “Night Song,” the atmospheric electric guitar of “Paris” to the grittier rock-like riffs and structural curveballs of “We Grow Accustomed to the Dark.”

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