Michele Stodart - Wide-Eyed Crossing
Wide-Eyed Crossing, debut solo album from Magic Numbers bassist Michelle Stodart, does feel like a labour of love. The voice is knowing, the lyrics wistful and melancholy (as every folky country-western album worth its salt should be) and is generally as lovely and peaceful as it should be - if slightly unoriginal. 'Here's To Somehow' and 'Foolish Love' are fun bluesy/c&w jaunts, while others like 'Foolish Love' and 'O Heart of Mine' go down the tried and tested (and, yes, slightly stale) singer/songwriter route without breaking any new ground: "O heart of mine / Left you out on the rain / And a change in my pockets / But heartache's the same."
This is grown-up heartbreak music, where the blues is more of an inconvenience than a life-altering experience. Songs to shed a few tears over, then dry your eyes and get back to the washing up.