I just had the opportunity to review the most recent release, Live at the Isabel, from Miss Emily and it's solid. Opening with Sometimes It's Better To Lose, Miss Emily takes command of the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts with her powerful vocals. Backed by Van Sheen, James McKenty and Rob Baker on guitar, Gord Sinclair on bass, Seamus Cowan on bass, Zak Colbert on bass, Sean Jensen and Rob Radford on drums, Benni Vander on keys, Jon "Bunny" Stewart on sax, and Spencer Evans on piano. Who Is He is a slinky R&B number with a cool guitar vamp and lush backing vocals by Kelly Prescott and Chad Murphy on backing vocals. Gospel flavored Three Words, is one of my favorite tracks on the release with super dynamics and heartfelt vocals, accompanied by piano. Very nice. The Letter, made popular by Joe Cocker is up next and really a strong rendition, closely following Cocker's arrangement. Soulful ballad, Blue Is Still Blue is a great showcase for Emily and another of my favorites on the release. With a sparse background, mostly piano, this track is strong. Another flavor is The Sellout with it's R&B basis. Emily hardly takes a breath nailing it to the wall and with rich backing vocals and tight guitar answer to her call, this track is very nice. Wrapping the release is Hold Back the River with it's gospel roots, acapella, handclaps and all. I really think that this is a cool release and one that should get some attention.
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