Jessie Galante - 'Spitfire'

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Jessie Galante - 'Spitfire'

A surefire success.

Here we are again; another fine-throated songstress compiling a top notch collection of classic and bluesy tracks. If it carries on like this, we'll have to have a cull. Humane of course. Death by Adam Lambert perhaps...

Although the press info does its best to talk up a story of struggle through Buffalo as the daughter of a Sicilian family who desperately wanted to make it in music; that's what is paramount here, if it's no good the story could be the equivalent of ‘Huckleberry Finn' and we wouldn't care. Well, memorise the story because this could be the start of something big. The opening title track is the best thing here, a funky folly which is sexy and swaggering with an electric piano and a hip-shaking bass. Jessie joins in, soulfully crooning and jabbing us in the pleasure centre. But then ‘High Road Easy' effortlessly continues the quality with some classic rock style, getting it's hands dirty and locking into a groove which dares you not to nod your head.

When ‘I Crave It' rolls around with a good-foot, hit-it-and-quit-it funkiness, Jessie yelping like a banshee and then handling a superb, life-affirming chorus with alacrity, giving herself time to bring us down suddenly to an acoustic confessional section, then completing in an angry Skunk Anansie no-passengers vibe. The quality is getting silly. It ain't all great, as ‘I've Got To Use My Imagination' is right and only has its openness to recommend it, despite a simmering organ and ‘No Fool No More' tries to contact the spirit of Joplin but only manages to scare up a cut-price Grace Slick.

Otherwise though, ‘Grown Man Cry' is all big bothersome bass, straw hat and jazz hands, fifty solos and a cheesy organ (alright, alright!); a diamond encrusted ditty whilst closer ‘Mama (I Get A Little Crazy)' simmers soulfully until it catches fire around a soaring solo, a gentle backing vocal and guitar and keyboard both fuzzy as Rio Ferdinand's thinking (allegedly).

Husband Larry Swist's thinking production is as large as the fiscal deficit, so late it almost distorts, whilst the braggadocio of backers Tibor Ferenczi (bass) and Janos Takacs (drums) is elastic and ecstatic in equal measure. Solos from Janos Szucs and Peter Raso are pretty tasty too.

This is a surefire success. Recently inducted into the Buffalo Hall of Fame, more of those plaudits can't be far off. Spitfire? This most certainly does.

Steve Swift

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