Americana singer/songwriter Sarah Lou Richards continues her steady ascent up the musical ladder with the release of delightful third album “The Woman Behind the Curtain.” It’s the first time recording with a full band for Richards, whose first-rate vocals have earned her comparisons to the likes of Alison Krauss and Lee Ann Womack.
“My home is filled with my family’s things,” Richards says. “My quilts are my grandma’s. My dishes are my parents’. Everything is really mismatched but it still fits, and that’s how this whole album feels. There’s a variety of tempos, a variety of styles, a variety of lyrics … but overall, every song is still me. It’s a big tapestry of me.”
The 13-track release is consistently strong, with Richards most impressive on “Nothing Left,” “Don’t Break My Heart,” “Home Again,” “Soul to Keep,” “Nod to Neil,” “Fear of Flying” and “Won’t Be Lonesome Long.” Producer Gary Nichols of The Steel Drivers joins Richards on “I Ain’t Easy to Love,” my favorite track. Enjoy, y’all. (Jeffrey Sisk)