Four years ago, Canadian folksinger Jill Barber reinvented herself as a smoky chanteuse with the lush Chances. Thanks largely to its catchy “Oh My My,” the album ignited a rapturous outpouring of praise across her native land, and she was heralded as the second coming of Edith Piaf or even Ella Fitzgerald. Not so fast. While the album demonstrated laudable pluck and confirmed Barber’s status as a solid songwriter, her retro-fashioned bleating seemed more a parlor trick, an elaborate game of dress-up, than a sustainably valid style.
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