Helene is actually Helene Dineen, formerly of cult band Barefoot Contessa, and owner of a remarkably expressive voice that is put to good use on all three tracks on this single. She's joined by her former bandmate Graham Gargiulo but it's clear that Marking Time is all about Dineen's voice.
The title track swoops in and glides along in a manner reminiscent of Calexico, especially their work last year with Nancy Sinatra. Dineen's vocal is sensual, smokey and perfectly suited here. The other tracks are more laid back, with Your Laughter being a dead-ringer for Mazzy Star and the six minute Big Talker an epic, lush masterpiece.
Barefoot Contessa may never have matched their critical acclaim with commercial success, but it's good to hear Helene Dineen still sounding as good as ever. Second time round, she may just crack it.