Another year, and another significant step forward in Pamela Luss’ progression toward the upper reaches of contemporary jazz-cabaret singers. Two years ago, Luss got off to a solid, if somewhat flawed, start with There’s Something About You I Don’t Know. Last year, with the release of Your Eyes, she found her emotional core, proving herself an admirably heartfelt balladeer. Now, Luss has learned to swing.
Not that this 14-track set is lacking in ballads. Indeed, Luss delivers lovely readings of “For All We Know,” “Bewitched,” “Moon River,” “Quiet Nights” and John Lennon’s “Imagine,” and serves up, in the company of tenor sax master Houston Person (who appeared throughout Your Eyes, and here adds delicious licks to five other tracks), a particularly poignant “Why Did I Choose You?” But it is the upbeat numbers—a sunlit “I’ve Never Been in Love Before,” a blissfully satisfied “More,” a joyously vibrant reading of the Godspell anthem “Day by Day” (with Joel Frahm, on soprano, stepping in for Person) and, most enjoyably, a sublime pairing with Freddy Cole on the Four Lads chestnut “No, Not Much”—that shine brightest and most strongly point to the sharp, skyward slant of Luss’ career trajectory.