Once again, the city of Chicago is on the radar with this debut release from singer-songwriter Andy Pratt.  This young talent mixes jazz, folk and some classical overtones in his very heady mix with his very cinematic lyrical stylings.  This is one of those rare albums that immediately enter your imagination upon first listen and for someone who is on his first release, it’s a very promising beginning.

Starting with the haunting and staggeringly lovely opening track, “Will You Be The One Tonight?”, I’m struck by the old-fashioned cafe jazz sound, the orchestration and the Sinatra/Como/Bennett type of arrangement – in many ways, this reminds me of the earliest experiments by The Style Council, which isn’t too far off the mark.  Add a very well-placed, simply twangy guitar solo and it’s magic.  The sweet guitar lullaby opening of “She’s Gotten In To My Dreams” offsets the rather humorous vocal delivery (shades of Jimmy Durante to these ears); the slow dance tempo of “Somewhere Down The Road” sends me (visually) to a smoky nightclub where people are swaying slowly as the musicians carry them from the bandstand.  The title track, “Horizon Disrupted” is exquisite with its stripped down performance (who doesn’t love brushed drums?) and “Through The Rain” closes this collection in a perfect manner – from quiet guitar and voice to full orchestra – another musical film – a rainy street at dusk comes to mind and a nod to Scott Walker.

This is beyond impressive; it’s one to savor and come back to time and again.  If this is any indication of what Andy Pratt can do, then I’m prepared to chomp at the bit for his next effort.  Full marks and a tip of the hat for doing something instantly classic.

HIGHLY RECOMMENDED

Horizon Disrupted is currently available