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October 2000

Miss Midori and the Jazz Inquisition
Miss Midori and the Jazz Inquisition
Southport

Before you listen to Chicago's Miss Midori work through the 12 original and standard swing tunes on her debut album, check out her revealing glossies in the liner notes: low-cut nurse's uniform, stand-up cleavage, thigh-high garters, stiletto pumps, pouty red lips. Yep, and that's pretty much how she sings, too. Midori's vocals blend parts of Dinah and Billie with the throwback purr of a mature Marilyn. On the opening cut, "Evil," she swears she's just a good girl gone a little bad; on the follow-up track, Midori claims to be pondering the "Temptation of Salvation," but you just know she's already slipped one foot under the sheets. The band is smoky-lounge crisp, and Midori is a commanding presence in more ways than one. Then again, that might be the pictures talking.

Originally published in October 2000
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