The Mighty Ship – Angela Desveaux

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What's so wrong with easy listening? If you can somehow manage to separate the words themselves from all their adult contemporary and lite FM connotations, easy listening should be something to aspire to. So why is it so scorned? Maybe easy listening just needs a poster child, and Angela Desveaux may be the girl.

A lilting singer, Angela Desveaux's music meshes country slowness with rich storytelling. Although you wouldn't bet the farm on it, this crooner's roots don't lie in the American South, rather, it's the rocky shores of the Canadian Atlantic that shape her vision; you can almost hear the crashing waves in her wistful songs.

Her pieces are well-crafted and watery, with lyrics aimed carefully at capturing a laconic mood. While she might not be of quite the same musical stature, it's hard to escape comparisons to Lucinda Williams. And not being from the South, her voice isn't as traditionally country as Emmylou Harris or Loretta Lynn—her style of songcraft is more akin to the alt-country of modern ensembles such as Brooklyn's Hem.

But Ms. Desveaux isn't all country, either. There is a steady undercurrent of rock-and-roll throughout this album. It's that edge that combines with her slow voice to end up sounding like The Pretenders on quaaludes.