Allison Moorer

Husky-voiced thrush Moorer had just about played out the string of her languid left-of-center Nashville country. Her initially great promise had been getting Xeroxed over and over again into fuzziness, but new producer Steve Earle kicks her energy up a few notches as Moorer's songwriting--previously in collaboration for the most part but now solo on all but one tune--breaks free from her previous hidebound patterns. What draws the listener into this album is her zesty progressive and tasty country-rock tunes like "You'll Never Know" and "It's Just for Today." But the way she finds the heart of her voice as well as new facets (and drops all previous affectation) on the lovely meditation "Hallelujah," the string-sketched kiss "Where You Are" and "New Years Day" (a chilling tale from her tragic childhood) suggests that Moorer is finally on her way to getting somewhere very interesting and rewarding.

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