A rare Japanese session from vocalist Helen Merrill
– one of a few key 60s recordings she cut on the Tokyo scene, after initial fame in the US! The album features a great small group arranged by drummer Takeshi Inomata, played by a combo that includes alto, baritone, and trumpet – all used in a cool and laidback mode that resonates nicely with Merrill
's more familiar 50s sides on Mercury – but which also stretches out more, too – not as "cool", and with a sense of inflection that's mighty nice. Helen
's in great form vocally – often singing in that almost-effortless mode that we love in her classic work – and titles include "It Never Entered My Mind", "Bewitched", "You Do Something To Me", "Teach Me Tonight", "Good Morning Heartache", and "My Favorite Things".
(Recent SHM-CD pressing, includes obi.)