Amy Ray and Emily Saliers have earned the rare distinction of being a harmonious folk duo who have never lost their distinctive individual flavors. They do not compose together, but rather provide support to each other’s compositions. Ray has always been the rocker and on the album’s opener, “Moment of Forgiveness,” she calls up a sultry southern soul that’s led by the modestly funky keyboards of Carol Isaacs. Saliers follows with one of her gentlest and most sublime tunes, “Deconstruction,” that allows the two singers to send their voices into flight despite the song’s emotional misgivings. “She’s Saving Me” offers greater hope. It’s the sound of two old friends who have succeeded without succumbing to prevailing fashions and styles. Ray’s title track takes a clear-eyed look at the American South that’s led her to great ambivalence and strong ideals towards social change, while “Nuevas Senoritas” adds a lighter Mexican touch to counterbalance Ray’s deeper emotional gravity.