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Wednesday, Oct. 1, 2014

The Almighty Sound brings swagger to Audra Mae's sound

Thursday, February 23, 2012

(Photo)
Audra Mae & The Almighty Sound are right on target with their self-titled album, released Feb. 14 on Side One Dummy Records.
When Audra Mae released her debut album "The Happiest Lamb" two years ago, it was to praises of her ability to carry a record with just her voice. The instruments were minimal, and Audra's dark, sultry vocals were front and center.

In the time since, the Oklahoma native has assembled The Almighty Sound, a six-piece band that brings a bigger sound to her music. "Audra Mae & The Almighty Sound," released on Valentine's Day by Side One Dummy, is a collection of 11 roots rockers that show a different attitude to Audra's music.

The record kicks off with "The Real Thing," "My Friend the Devil" and "Little Red Wagon," all three of which showcase a swagger unseen in the solo record.

And yet, still front and center on this record is Audra's voice. The vocals are sometimes more on the shouted side this time around, but she's just as good at that side of things.

Of course, she doesn't abandon the ballad entirely with beauties like "Old Italian Love Song" and "Two Melodies." She also finds some middle ground on "Annie Get Your Gun," which slows the tempo while keeping up the attitude.

My spin: B-

It's great to see a young artist grow without abandoning what worked well for her in the past. "Audra Mae & The Almighty Sound" is a great example of this from an exciting, sexy performer with a beautiful voice.

As long as Audra keeps the balance she's shown on the last two albums, she should continue to be an exciting artist to watch.