This is the first of hopefully many album reviews where I review lesser known/independent artists. Eleanor King's Cookies and Cake found its way into my hands thanks to a mutual friend shared by King and I, last December.
Cookies and Cake is a 9-track album, from the Michigan native, consisting of eight covers and one original song, written by King herself. This just-over-25-minute album captivates listeners with its not-trying-too-hard charm, as well as King's extremely endearing vocals. King's vocals throughout this album are paired with King's ukulele playing, which serves as the album's only instrumentation.
The songs covered in Cakes span from several older artist's including Ray Charles' "Georgia on My Mind" to Rudy Vallee's "P.S. I Love You" first recorded in the 1930s to more contemporary songs such as Nick Drake's "Saturday" and Leonard Cohen's oft-covered "Hallelujah". However the most intriguing cover on this album is Rhianna's 2007 hit, "Umbrella." The raw, stripped down version of this R&B chart topper, definitely trumps the synth-heavy, pitch-corrected version that plagued our radios three years ago.
Despite the album being mostly covers, King is at her best performing her own material. The album's title-track, is hands down the highlight of this album. Her simple, yet witty lyricism of a troubled relationship, sounds cute, but she offers "a fresh batch of fuck-you pies" to the man who has mistreated her. The lone original song on the album definitely makes the listener hungry for more of her self-written material, but until then we will have her Cookies and Cakes to tide us over.
Rating: 8/10 Beets
1) Moon River—Mercer/Mancini (c)1961
2) Georgia—Hoagy Carmichael (c)1930
3) Under My Umbrella—Rihanna (c)2007
4) Cookies and Cake—Eleanor King (c)2009
5) My Funny Valentine—Rodgers/Hart (c)1937
6) Hallelujah—Leonard Cohen (c)1984
7) Body & Soul—Johnny Green (c)1930
8) P.S. I Love You—Mercer/Jenkins (c)1934
9) Saturday Sun—Nick Drake (c)1969
Eleanor King—vocals, charango & ukuleles
Recorded by Duncan Ferguson, Oct. 2009
Click Here To Download "Moon River"
Link and Album Information swiped from Cookies and Cake Blog