12 Songs, 37 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Exene Cervenka is an unconventional singer who often sings conventional material. Her love for classic country, folk and blues has really come out on her solo albums. With X, Auntie Christ and the Original Sinners, she pushed forth her unusual relationship with harmonies and aggression, proving herself to be a singular hard rocker. Here, she turns sweet and open, innocent and wistful. The ache behind “Alone In Arizona” can nearly be tasted. “Falling,” with a swift pedal steel, hits the sweet spot of Cervenka’s country leanings. She isn’t a country singer, but she’s so good at heartbreak, she must be believed. Dave Alvin adds guitar touches and horn arrangements from David Ralicke flesh out the sound in parts. But the real centerpiece here is the pleading voice that guides “I Wish It Would Stop Raining.” Songs such as “Dirty Snow,” “Someday I’ll Forget” and “I’ll Admit It Now” are tunes that would be highlights in any singer’s catalog. But no one can sing them with honesty and a lack of pretense like Exene Cervenka.

EDITORS’ NOTES

Exene Cervenka is an unconventional singer who often sings conventional material. Her love for classic country, folk and blues has really come out on her solo albums. With X, Auntie Christ and the Original Sinners, she pushed forth her unusual relationship with harmonies and aggression, proving herself to be a singular hard rocker. Here, she turns sweet and open, innocent and wistful. The ache behind “Alone In Arizona” can nearly be tasted. “Falling,” with a swift pedal steel, hits the sweet spot of Cervenka’s country leanings. She isn’t a country singer, but she’s so good at heartbreak, she must be believed. Dave Alvin adds guitar touches and horn arrangements from David Ralicke flesh out the sound in parts. But the real centerpiece here is the pleading voice that guides “I Wish It Would Stop Raining.” Songs such as “Dirty Snow,” “Someday I’ll Forget” and “I’ll Admit It Now” are tunes that would be highlights in any singer’s catalog. But no one can sing them with honesty and a lack of pretense like Exene Cervenka.

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