WAXAHATCHEE - TIGERS BLOOD

WAXAHATCHEE - TIGERS BLOOD

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Released: 22/03/24

On album number seven, Waxahatchee’s move, developed over the preceding critically acclaimed LPs, from lo-fi folk and Throwing Muses-esque college rock to lush alt-country is finally complete. It’s a hard trick to pull off as, shorn of overdrive pedals which can sometimes flatter to deceive regarding songcraft, musicianship, and singing ability, there is nowhere to hide with the mix of exacting production and clean, high-in-the-mix vocals which define country music; but with the superb Tigers Blood, Waxahatchee – Katie Crutchfield to her friends – manages it without skipping a beat.

Like Angel Olsen, who followed a similar trajectory, culminating with 2022’s excellent Big Time, hearing Crutchfield’s voice, reverb-free and close in glorious hi-fi, her gorgeous Emmy Lou Harris-esque Southern lilt made fully apparent, is a joy. But the biggest revelation is the sheer quality of her songwriting, which, aided by producer Brad Cook and her accomplished band (not least MJ Lenderman, who guests on the lovely Aimee Mann-esque ‘Right Back to It’), is revealed in all its glory.