Dori Freeman's new album, Letters Never Read (iTunes/Amazon), is full of delights. With transcendent melodies and gentle ballads, it's inspiring rave reviews from big publications like Rolling Stone, The New York Times, and Spin, which called it "subtly inventive."
That sounds about right. Her opening songs verge on pop country but retain just enough old time flavor for this Galax, Virginia native to roam between genres. The understated "Cold Waves" pulls from singer-songwriter traditions to reveal the melancholiness of motherhood. "Over There" is pure old time gospel. Dating to at least the 1930s, it lends irresistible lyrics:
Well, I met ol’ Satan through the door
I hit him on the head with a two-by-four
I’m gonna wear that starry crown over there!