13 Songs, 44 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

As a singer/songwriter who's found her way into the alt.country sphere, Kelly Hogan captures the feel of vintage roots music, with a touch of soul that's garnered her comparisons to Bobbie "Ode to Billie Joe" Gentry and Shelby Lynne. Hogan's first solo album in 11 years shows it's a shame she hasn't recorded more on her own. (She's lately taken work as a backup singer in Neko Case's group.) Here, Hogan's backing band is solid and tasteful, starring Booker T. Jones on organ, Gabriel Roth of The Dap-Kings on bass, and James Gadson on drums. Aside from the self-penned "Golden," the songs come from other writers. M. Ward's "Daddy's Little Girl" is presented as an apology from Frank Sinatra to his daughter Nancy. Jack Pendarvis and Andrew Bird's "We Can't Have Nice Things" recounts domestic violence, while Hogan's smoky vocal evokes a nightclub feel. "Plant White Roses" is a classic tender ballad from The Magnetic Fields' Stephin Merritt. But it's Vic Chesnutt's "Ways of This World" that really captures the steamy American South of Hogan's Georgia roots and her connection to Gentry's sultriness. 

EDITORS’ NOTES

As a singer/songwriter who's found her way into the alt.country sphere, Kelly Hogan captures the feel of vintage roots music, with a touch of soul that's garnered her comparisons to Bobbie "Ode to Billie Joe" Gentry and Shelby Lynne. Hogan's first solo album in 11 years shows it's a shame she hasn't recorded more on her own. (She's lately taken work as a backup singer in Neko Case's group.) Here, Hogan's backing band is solid and tasteful, starring Booker T. Jones on organ, Gabriel Roth of The Dap-Kings on bass, and James Gadson on drums. Aside from the self-penned "Golden," the songs come from other writers. M. Ward's "Daddy's Little Girl" is presented as an apology from Frank Sinatra to his daughter Nancy. Jack Pendarvis and Andrew Bird's "We Can't Have Nice Things" recounts domestic violence, while Hogan's smoky vocal evokes a nightclub feel. "Plant White Roses" is a classic tender ballad from The Magnetic Fields' Stephin Merritt. But it's Vic Chesnutt's "Ways of This World" that really captures the steamy American South of Hogan's Georgia roots and her connection to Gentry's sultriness. 

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