The 20 BEST VOCAL CD's of 2009 by W. Royal Stokes in Jazz House Diaries
In Love Again is a body of music evincing the mystery of the human “heart” with its inexplicable range of romantic impulse, from fascination to lust to obsession. Throughout the collection, the uncertainty, the falling in and the falling out, the elation and the despair are expressed.
In Love Again opens with the erotic desperation of “Never Let Me Go” followed by the unapologetic confession of “I Fall In Love Too Easily.” Marten's own song “Reinventing Me” (derived from a composition by Clem Ehoff) suggests the lengths to which we will go in the quest of our heart’s desire. Jerry Herman’s poignant “If He Walked Into My Life” is a soul-searching revelation, and “Alice In Wonderland” if offered as a breezy respite from the pain of self-doubt. “Alfie,” ponders the question, “What’s it all about?” and the masterpiece “You Must Believe In Spring” articulates the reply. “I’m Old Fashioned” precedes the tender “Skylark,” while “Like A Lover” offers a Bergman lyric of complete adoration. “Cry Me A River” delivers a bitter, ironic message to a betrayer, and the jaundice is diluted by “An Occasional Man,” a light-hearted paean to plain old-fashioned lust. Near the end we ask “Where Do You Start?” a tour-de-force by Johnny Mandel and the magnificent Bergmans that addresses the dissolution of a established relationship. “Hello Young Lovers” is a salute from a retired player in the game and games of romantic love.
The depth and sensibility of Larry Willis’s minimal arrangements allowed Marten to freely interpret the lyrics and music of In Love Again. His powerful and moving solos provide the eloquent “other side” to their musical dialogue. In Love…Again is dedicated to Shirley Horn, their beloved friend who made this possible.