REVIEW

 

ZOZO SISTERS [Linda Ronstadt & Ann Savoy]
A Prairie Home Companion 2006 [no label 1CD Torrent: 101932]
Live at Abravanel Hall, Salt Lake City, Utah, USA, June 23, 2006 (broadcast June 24, 2006). Previewing material from the upcoming album "Adieu False Heart". Ex SBD stereo.

Just months after reinventing herself as a soft jazz diva, Linda Ronstadt returned with an album that catapulted her back towards her Americana roots, linking with Cajun specialist Ann Savoy for a collaboration that is as haunting as it is beautiful. Adieu False Heart is arguably Ronstadt’s finest (and certainly her most heartfelt) offering since the early 1980s, and this recording of the duo’s Prairie Home Companion showing, in April 2006, highlights everything that made the album so special.

Offering up all four of the songs performed that evening, plus the interviews and between-songs chatter that made the original broadcast even more memorable, it’s a crystal clear recording that might, in places, even out-strip the LP — an already gorgeous rendering of "Walk Away Renee" appears with added crystalline purity, while the title track and "Tournes Tournes Bébé Créole" pack an irresistible extra jauntiness. It’s also great fun to hear Ronstadt discussing the genesis of the project… how she and Savoy used to meet up at home, and sing together in their pajamas. "Too Old To Die Young" closes the performance in somber, but suitably stately style, and the entire performance proves one thing. No matter how far Ronstadt may have strayed from her basics in the past, it’s clearly not because she’d forgotten them. - Dave Thompson

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