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Live at the Matterhorn – L.A. Mitchell

L.A. Mitchell Live at the Matterhorn

Live at the Matterhorn

(2008), 8/10
Based in Christchurch, New Zealand, L.A. Mitchell works in an idiom where jazz, soul, and pop intersect. Live at the Matterhorn is her second release – it reprises songs from her first album, Debut, as well as some covers and unreleased tracks. I picked Live at the Matterhorn out of the dollar bin after reading a positive review, and I’ve enjoyed it ever since – with Mitchell’s Fender Rhodes and rich, smoky voice, Live at the Matterhorn has a classic soul feel. On Live at the Matterhorn Mitchell is joined by a jazzy ensemble – and her backing band do a classy job, especially the rich harmony vocal arrangements from her backing singers. ‘Love Will Rain Down’ could have come straight from Carole King’s Tapestry, before it launches into a soul bridge, while the cover of Hall and Oates’ ‘Rich Girl’ adds some muscle to the original. Mitchell rides solid grooves from her rhythm section on songs like ‘Be Free’ and ‘We Could Be’, and showcases thoughtful, introspective lyrics on ‘Blessed Be’. While Mitchell hasn’t produced much solo work since – she has kept busy with family and other musical projects – Live at the Matterhorn is a very good showcase for her considerable talents.

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