Love and Circumstance

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More than just a covers album, Carrie uses this collection to position herself as a thoughtful, caring interpreter of some of country’s finest songs. Her honeyed and relaxed voice seems to drizzle over Gillian Welch’s “I Made a Lover’s Prayer,” and oozes with quiet confidence on country cornerstones like Hank Williams’ “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry” and Merle Haggard’s “I Started Loving You Again.” She smartly includes covers by not just legendary artists, but top contemporary songwriters as well, as she purrs innocently through Lucinda Williams’ “Steal Your Love” and steps into her own as an expressive conveyor of hope on her sunny spin on John Hiatt and Little Village’s “Big Love.” She concludes by acknowledging her heritage on the Spanish-language “La Puñalada Trapera,” which was originally recorded by her great-aunt, bolero balladeer Eva Garza. With its diversity, Love and Circumstance proves that Carrie doesn’t let heritage rein her in.

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