A sharp wit, a ready supply of hooks, and a willingness to test musical boundaries distinguishes Dean Brody’s work on his fourth album, Crop Circles. Since his 2009 self-titled debut, the British Columbia–born singer/songwriter has established himself as one of Canada’s most promising country talents. His craft as a tunesmith invites comparisons with Brad Paisley, while his penchant for narrative ballads suggests folk legend Ian Tyson. Brody is very much his own man, though, as evidenced by tracks as different as “Bounty” (the tale of two fugitive lovers finding happiness in Mexico) and the title tune (a quirky account of teenaged partiers, a suspicious farmer, and UFO paranoia). “Four Wheel Drive” and “Mountain Man” have fun with outdoor scenarios, while “Another Man’s Gold” and “Back to the Front Porch” celebrate old-fashioned values with vivid imagery and sincere feeling. Brody shows his folk leanings on “Kansas Cried,” a Civil War love story set to a bittersweet waltz. Unexpected detours like the Jamaican-flavored “Sand in My Soul” offer variety amid the mostly acoustic-slanted tracks.