Brandy Clark

Brandy Clark

Brandy Clark’s rise through the ranks of country music from songwriter for hire to celebrated solo artist has been a marvel to watch. Clark, whose early career as a songwriter yielded hits for Miranda Lambert and Kacey Musgraves, is one of the genre’s finest craftspersons, writing image-rich, masterfully told story-songs and nuanced snapshots of relationships gone wrong in equally great measure. She first showed off her solo artist chops with 2013’s 12 Stories, a critically acclaimed collection that led to a record deal with Warner Records. Now on her fourth studio outing, Clark has found a way to combine the intimacy of her early solo material with the savvy sensibilities she developed behind the scenes. Helmed by producer Brandi Carlile, Brandy Clark is Clark’s most cohesive project yet, a largely quiet, raw affair imbued with a greater sense of vulnerability than her earlier work. Carlile’s spare production gives Clark ample room to showcase her singing voice especially, as on the forthright and plainspoken “Tell Her You Don’t Love Her,” the soulful “All Over Again,” and closer “Take Mine,” on which Clark serves up crystalline couplets of compassion, sharing her sense of hope with anyone lacking their own. Guests on the album include Derek Trucks, Lucius, and Carlile herself, who joins Clark on the LP’s emotional centerpiece, “Dear Insecurity.”

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