Akron/Family, Angela Desveaux & the Mighty Ship | AV-aerie | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

Akron/Family, Angela Desveaux & the Mighty Ship Recommended All Ages Early Warnings (Music) Soundboard Critics' Picks

When: Tue., Dec. 2, 8 p.m. 2008

There’s not as much overt twang on The Mighty Ship (Thrill Jockey), the new album from Montreal singer-songwriter Angela Desveaux, as there was on her 2006 debut, but the bigger change is that she sounds so at ease with herself—she no longer seems to be self-consciously imitating admitted influences like Lucinda Williams and Gillian Welch (though the vulnerability in her pretty voice still reminds me a little of Laura Cantrell). Instead she puts her faith in her elegant melodies, and in the unfussy arrangements animated by her nimble band; by relaxing into the steady-rolling strummed guitars and favoring direct phrasing over fancy vocal curlicues, she brings an appealing intimacy and warmth to the simple, catchy tunes. A handful of tracks feature horns and strings, but Desveaux’s singing is so thoroughly the center of attention that it took me a couple listens to really notice them—not even the fine lead playing of guitarist Mike Feuerstack could pull my ears away from her. Most of the songs are about relationships—“There’s something about joining another that makes you feel sad,” she sings on “Joining Another,” “Like leaving part of yourself, convinced that it’s bad”—but for me the bittersweet flavor of her voice says more than her lyrics ever could. —Peter Margasak

Price: $15

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