This is the woman who sparked riots, whose words provoked boycotts and even death threats. Well, she's got a new album out, and we think you should listen to it.
It's been seven whole years since the release of the Grammy-winning Dixie Chicks record Take the Long Way Home. Today, lead singer Natalie Maines has dropped her first solo album, Mother, and it's filled with surprising wonderfulness.
Let's just zoom right past the infamous "incident," when Maines criticized George W. Bush's involvement in Iraq during a concert in England and was proclaimed a traitor 10 years ago. Let's just focus on the music.
First of all, Mother is not a country record. Maines jumped into a current totally her own and embraced the rock genre — producer Ben Harper might have had something to do with that. Most of the songs on the album are covers but picked with the precision of a surgeon.
As the New York Daily News put it in its review, Mother "is a flat-out masterpiece, an ideal match of singer and songs that moves Maines from being a skilled and decorative singer into one of the most emotive vocalists of our time."
The tracks that particularly spoke to us were "Mother," a Roger Waters cover, which is a refreshing take from the voice of a woman; Jeff Buckley's "Lover, You Should've Come Over," which Maines executed with chilling rawness and power; and the original "Take It on Faith," which is just so commanding and heartbreaking.
With this album, Natalie Maines reminds us why we fell in love with her in the first place. Her vocals, track selection and invested emotion are what make Mother an incredible record. So if this sounds like your cup of tea, we say pick up a copy. Check out the live performance of "Take It on Faith" below.
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