Kathleen Edwards' Asking for Flowers is her first new album in three years. The album features eleven new songs, all written by Edwards, and finds her performing at the peak of her creative powers, supported by a group of master backing musicians. Flowers tells indelible, clear-eyed stories of hope and resignation, humor and death, unconditional love and brazen inequality. Co-produced by Edwards and Jim Scott (Tom Petty, Whiskeytown), the album features, among others, keyboardist Benmont Tench from The Heartbreakers, drummer Don Heffington (Bob Dylan, The Wallflowers), bassist Bob Glaub (Jackson Browne, Warren Zevon, Leonard Cohen), guitarist Colin Cripps (Sarah McLachlan, Bryan Adams), and pedal steel ace Greg Leisz (Sheryl Crow, Wilco, Robert Plant & Alison Krauss).
On her third album, Kathleen Edwards
is poised reach the larger audiences she deserves. More striking on this new release is her stronger vocal and lyrical prowess which makes it apparent that she’s in the zone of her craft. After proving her mettle on previous outings
, she delivers with further conviction and confidence across songs suited for both quiet country roads and late night city bars. Her songs are often delivered with rough edges and heavy, somewhat smoky breath, yet nothing is overstated. As one of the latest great female voices to emerge on the Alt-Country scene, Kathleen Edwards stands tall next to other significant genre partners including Lucinda Williams
, Gillian Welch
, and Patty Griffin
. In her lyrics she willingly reveals the ghosts in her closet, as well as her own self recriminations, at one point stating that, “Choosing my words carefully / has never been my strength / I’ve been known to be vague and often pointless.” Maybe so, but the essence of her meaning and the tone of its delivery still resonates with lonely hearts and souls driving down life’s dustier roads. --Lucas Hilbert