Jana Mashonee – New Moon Born (CD)

“Faded Love” is one of the strongest introductions to Jana Mashonee’s music that could conceivably be placed on an album like “New Moon Born”. This is largely due to the arrangements and how the instrumentation plays well with the vocals present on the track; the funky, tightly-wound set of insutrmentation here fuels the vocals into a whole other realm. Mashonee’s vocals, especially during tracks like “Faded Love”, play on classic artists such as Mariah Carey and Natalie Cole while having a more current, Leona Lewis tinge at points. “Solid Ground” immediately follows “Faded Love”, and is an important track for a number of reasons.

Where there are a number of styles and approaches that are continued from the prior track, listeners will be pleased to hear that Mashonee adds some substantial things to her repertoire. The chorus here is something that will stick with listeners for months after putting down the CD, while the vocals themselves showcase a large range of style, whether it be a nineties, SWV sound or a 2009, Jennifer Hudson type of approach. “For Just One Night” is a sea change from the aforementioned tracks, and it is due to this unique sound that the track stands as one of the most impressive on the disc. With a much slower tempo than the average song on “New Moon Born”, Mashonee calls forth the spirit of a Selena an Aaliyah on “For Just One Night”.

Where a number of singers are drawn by the instrumentation much like a ship is drawn by the current, Mashonee’s ability as a singer allows her to really set the tempo of the track and stand at a level above that of the (very) capable musicianship that is par for the course on “New Moon Born”. With a trio of impressive tracks leading listeners out from “New Moon Born” (“Lost In Lies”, “Chameleon”, and Carousel”), Mashonee has done everything on this disc. I know that I will be eagerly anticipating anything else to come down the line in the next few years from Mashonee. If you are a fan of a strong, authoritative statements made by independent women, “New Moon Born” should be the next disk to pick up.

Top Tracks: Chameleon, Lessons Learned

Rating: 8.4/10

Jana Mashonee – New Moon Born / 2009 Self / 16 Tracks / http://www.janamashonee.com

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