Texas Platters go mondo
Reviewed by Doug Freeman, Fri., Aug. 8, 2014
Jess KleinLearning Faith
The title track to Jess Klein's seventh studio LP sets a tone of seeking and defiance at the outset, a direct and bluesy stare back at struggles personal, cultural, and spiritual. Klein's vocals and vision have matured with power and confidence, ripping raw on biting rocker "So Fucking Cool," and beautifully tender in the swells of "Loving You" and weary vulnerability of "Wish." Klein inhibits perspectives with tangible, reality-grounded emotion, but the local songwriter also manifests the deeply personal aspect of politics with the dark, seething "If There's a God," inspired by Wendy Davis' filibuster. Then there's "Dear God," which finds a pregnant teenager grappling with a world where, "I tried to see the doctor today, but the governor slammed the door right in my face." Finding her own voice while lending it to those in need, Jess Klein's faith is worn from experience, and stronger for it.