Judith Edelman – Clear Glass Jar

January 01, 1970

(31 Tigers)



Considering the tangled trajectory that Judith Edelman has traveled up
until now, her newest outing ought to have more in common with a soap opera
than a mere collection of new songs.  The
daughter of a Nobel Prize-winning scientist and classical violinist, she grew
up playing piano, picked up the guitar at the relatively advanced age of 26 and
eventually put out three critically acclaimed albums in the late ‘90s.  However, a continuing struggle with stage
fright and a failed marriage derailed her for a while, making
Glass Jar
— her first album in nearly nine years — a comeback of sorts and a
welcome return. 


It’s evident from the outset that Edelman isn’t your typical low-cast
singer/songwriter type and while
Clear Glass Jar is a remarkably revealing and
unusually candid commentary on conflicting emotions, it’s written from a
literate and knowing point of view.  Her
work as a composer for PBS documentaries and her efforts at earning her Master
of Fine Arts degree infuse her MO, giving songs such as the Kate Bush/Tori
Amos-like “Karma, Jane” and the lively “Dead Flow” a shimmering vitality that
makes them compelling to say the very least. 
Edelman’s material betrays a cool confidence and a well-tempered
delivery, investing “Firefly” and “Magnetic” with her hushed contemplation and
“Load Of Blues” and “Meet Me There” with an easy gait and open embrace.  Edelman makes no effort to skew her darkened
perspective, venting weary reflection on “Tired of This Town” and confronting
her demons at ongoing intervals.  Still,
it’s her ability to go from a waif-like whisper to a reverberating refrain in
the space of a single song that proves not only her agility but her ability as


Standout Tracks: “Karma, Jane,” “Firefly,”


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