Taste the new CD by U.K. based Australian Karen Lane could be more appropriately entitled Tasteful. Tasteful in the Brazilian Bossa Nova inspired music on the recording and that Lane has a voice that one could easily fall in love with and a very musical and tasteful delivery. Her delicate bell - like voice and clear diction draws the listener close and is nicely juxtaposed with light and sometimes very lush accompaniment. The 12 tunes on the CD include three compositions by Antonio Carlos Jobim, three original compositions by Lane, and standards by Sammy Kahn, Victor Young and Henry Mancini. Lane is also responsible for 10 of the 12 arrangements on Taste.
Lane opens by easily romancing the listener’s ear with the with a very mellow and laid back version of Antonio Carlos Jobim’s "Photograph." Also of note is the Stan Getz inspired sound of tenor saxophonist Theo Travis. A good follow up is another bossa nova styled tune "I Wanna Be Loved" which has Lane accompanied by strings. Her original tune "Nothing More than You" is a beautiful love song that continues the Latin rhythmic feel and combines a wonderful lyric with a sensuous alto flute played behind Lanes vocals. Lane’s other original composition "Just the Same" is another very beautiful love song very similar in style to "Nothing More Than You." The title cut "Taste" another Lane original however, is quite different. The piece begins with a violinist Julian Ferraretto creating some interesting sound effects on his instrument and Lane’s lyric this time is more cautionary about being unable to avoid a romantic encounter.
Her treatment of the standard "My Foolish Heart" is a driving upbeat approach, and her interpretation of Sammy Kahn’s "I Fall In Love Too Easily" is a more down tempo Latin feel with Nathan Haines’ tenor saxophone commenting and accompanying Lane’s every phrase. Her version of Henry Mancini’s "Slow Hot Wind" incorporates overdubs of her voice to create a contrapuntal line with the melody and choral texture in her delivery of the song. Also of note are the ethereal guitar solo by Dave Colton and the violin solo of Julian Ferraretto.Karen Lane’s CD Taste provides a wonderfully romantic, mellow and tasteful listening experience. While the recording certainly would delight fans of Brazilian inspired music, her recording would make an excellent addition to anyone’s collection.