Old Yellow Moon 


Thankfully, the second posthumous Winehouse release isn’t filled with scraps that didn’t make last year’s Lioness. Drawn from BBC appearances, it reminds listeners what a charismatic vocalist Winehouse was. The early material, recorded circa 2004’s Frank album, showcases Winehouse’s jazz roots, pairing her sultry, scat-like singing with big band arrangements. The handful of tracks from her 2006 breakthrough Back to Black, including her signature “Rehab,” mine more of an R&B groove. These tracks highlight the all-too-real heartache in her brassy, bruised voice—a quality that distinguishes her from other retro-soul songstresses. The final four selections—covers ranging from the Sarah Vaughan standard “Lullaby of Birdland” to “Valerie,” a bluesy rock ballad from the Liverpool group the Zutons—reflect her range of influences and ability to make songs her own. This well-assembled set, which also includes a DVD, shifts the focus to her singing—something often overshadowed by her lifestyle. –Michael Berick



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