Audrey Auld's roots are in Tasmania, an exotic Australian isle that suggests nothing of the lissome singer's precise, terse lyrical style or her licentious way with vocal twang. Part Kathleen Edwards and part Kasey Chambers, the country-folk songstress mostly hews to the sunny side of Americana (think glittering acoustic guitars and springy rhythms), but also appropriates blues and jazz when the dance-floor impulse strikes. She doesn't front about her country connections, either. "I never grew up in a mining town," she sings, "but I've been down in a hole." The songs on 2006's Lost Men and Angry Girls spell out metaphorical addictions, skewer all-too-literal peacenik politics and lead the listener on a wild-goose chase for the legendary Luckenbach, Texas. With her clever, spirited songs, this Aussie may yet find the way.
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