Gregg Arthur
Self Released
5 stars
Reviewed by Alex Siegers

No music does heartbreak and loneliness like jazz, and Gregg Arthur’s tenth album The Ballad Collection tugs at your heartstrings with each tender tune. Sydney-based crooner and one of Australia’s finest jazz vocalists, Gregg Arthur is joined by a jazz orchestra complete with strings, adding a vast lushness to his rich baritone. The album includes several well-loved standards, but it is Arthur’s interpretation of Would You Believe that renders me utterly devastated, evoking that unique feeling of fatalism that sets in with your sixth, eighth or tenth whisky. Reprieve is found in The Way You Look Tonight, a well needed breath of fresh air amidst the palpable heartache of the album. Four Gregg Arthur originals also make their debut. The highlight of these, When I Think of You, closes out the album, transporting you to some dimly lit, no-name bar as late-night blurs into early morning. Listening to this album in its intended order is essential. Without the delicate balance of the lighter tunes between the more melancholic tracks, you risk being completely shattered by the emotions Arthur evokes.