Last year Atlanta based band The Whiskey Gentry released a great album of witty country songs called Dead Ringer and now their front-woman Lauren Morrow is stepping out solo with this superb self-titled EP. Lauren has recently moved to Nashville and the four songs featured on the EP were recorded at the Creative Workshop studio, produced by Parker Cason.
The first time I heard Vicki Lynn, the tribute to her mother which opens this EP, I have to admit I teared up a little at the heartfelt revelations in the song and the depth of love in every note. To contemplate the lives your parents had before you were born is just really fascinating to me, plus it is so refreshing to hear songs which honour women’s stories.
Classic country weepie I Don’t Think of You At All is a surprisingly defiant little anthem about embracing yourself and not caring what other people think of you. Her voice catches for a moment at the end, as her vulnerability shines through. Those little moments of personality really convey a sense of Morrow defining herself as a solo artist, away from the more breezy sound of her band.
Mess Around exposes a fake friendship, the title showing a real steely determination to not be played the fool. The song uses a more rocking guitar and shows the direction that Morrow may take in the future may be more expansive than simple classic country.
Another woman inspired by a true life story appears on this album in the form of Barbara Jean, an unfortunate and suffering wife who went missing. The song’s hypnotic swing reveals a sinister undercurrent to the story of the trip she took to a lake with her husband. Singing from the man’s perspective adds a touch of menace to the mysterious murder ballad.
This EP is a sweet little relaunch for Lauren Morrow, showcasing the strength of her songwriting and style. If you’ve never listened to her before then you’re in for a treat and if you’re familiar with her work then you won’t be disappointed with this confident new direction.