BettySooHeat Sin Water Skin
Forgive BettySoo's album for looking so Starbucks. It tastes nothing like decaf vanilla singer-songwriter. Patty Griffin is the immediate touchstone on opener "Never Knew No Love," Soo's declaration that she "Never knew no stain like the one I'm hidin' now" right up there with Griffin's Flaming Red visions. Soo's folk and country songs are tethered to the four baptismal elements of the title, as well as Gurf Morlix's loose-knit production, which makes for a pretty relaxed recording. Things get a little schmaltzy ("Whisper My Name") and a little naked ("Never the Pretty Girl"), but Soo's snow-white soprano puts up a good fight, as "Get Clean" and "Still Small Voice" attest. Her closing cover of Hank Williams' "Lonesome Whistle" demonstrates she's most comfortable in country, but here's hoping that in the future BettySoo belts a little more.