Maria review

Star-Ledger (Newark, New Jersey, USA) - September 22, 1995
by J. B. (full author name unknown)

Velvet-lush, often wordless vocals layered thickly across sparse, spooky piano and percussion backgrounds fill this Canadian-born artist's fifth (sic) record.

Although occasionally spiced up with riffs of jazz trumpet or animated drum solos, the slow pace of almost every tune is this album's chief fault. The flawless production and sweetness of Siberry's voice make the album easy to listen to ... and to fall asleep to. Many of these songs, ornamented with lyrics stolen from lullabies and Siberry's heavy-breathing delivery, might make great background music for a serious date.

The one exception is the album's final song, 'Oh My My,' a 20-minute tune separate from the rest of the album by a two-minute period of silence.

This tune, a sort of New Age concerto, mixes choruses sung by a gospel choir with melodies played on a sitar, Siberry reciting nursery rhymes aloud, and a big splashy horn section. This number slowly builds to a dazzling crescendo of trumpets and 'Mary had a little lamb' unlike anything this listener has heard before; it's almost worth sitting through the rest of the album to hear it.