Music: Nightclub

Patricia Barber

Cross Diana Krall with Susan Sontag, and you get Patricia Barber, whose throaty, come-hither vocals and coolly incisive piano are displayed to devastating effect on her first all-standards album. Nightclub is clearly designed to prove that the cerebral Chicago songstress can be more than just a lesbian cult figure, and it succeeds spectacularly: Barber's hushed, sensuous version of Bye Bye Blackbird hasn't been bettered since Miles Davis last took the old standby out for a spin.

--By Terry Teachout

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