Eleni Mandell's singing stops me cold. It's the things she does with her voice - the way she drags out the word "moon" for just a moment longer than it should be in "Moonglow." It's the pause between "you" and "sleep" in the song "Girls," and a twin pause between the second and third "girls." Her style falls somewhere between country languor and smoky jazz, with hints of k.d. lang, Norah Jones, and Hope Sandoval. Her album has been over there on the right, under "The Smudge Recommends," for most of the year already, but I think I like this live KCRW performance even more. She just seems so much closer.
Eleni Mandell - Live on KCRW (4-18-2007) (mp3s)
The Makeout King
Miss Me (alt.)
Watch the performance here, including the interview in which Eleni Mandell says "I fell in love, and he loved me back, for a change," and where Nic Harcourt asks "Do you use your songs to work stuff out?"