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Carrington MacDuffie Carrington MacDuffie
Album: Kiss Make Better
Label: Indie Extreme
Tracks: 13
Website: http://www.carringtonmacduffie.com

Born in New York and variously based in Seattle and Austin, MacDuffie is a multi-hyphenate whose life involves not just music but narrating audio books, acting, writing poetry, target shooting and piloting a fixed-wing aircraft. Making her recording debut in 2014, she described her latest, recorded in Nashville, as embracing the concept of, as Marvin put it, sexual healing.

That's especially evident in the title track opener, its organ notes evocative of 'I Put A Spell On You', the song a bluesy, sultry number with a catchy country-tinged tumbling chorus and wah wah guitar from Tim Galloway, the theme spilling across into the warblingly sung 'Red Kiss, Blue Halo' which turns it eye to the spiritual aspect of erotic love.

The album features both old and new original material that ranges from the soul organ and reggae rhythm lilt of 'Love Chased Me' to the dreamily anthemic 'Rising Sun' (where she reminds me of Buffy Sainte Marie), the glorious tumbling country pop of 'Come For Me' and the effervescent guitar rocking 'Hot Sun of the Summer'. There's a more atmospheric, cosmic shimmer to the synth heavy ballad 'Like Sonar' while 'You Are My Own Thing' is a bluesy psychedelic prowl with MacDuffie in vocally sensual mood and the skittering beats of the summery midtempo ballad 'Over Again' comes coloured with an electric sitar.

There's also a couple of striking reworks of classic songs. Best known for either the doo wop version by The Marcels or Billie Holiday's jazzy swing, Rodgers and Hart's evergreen 'Blue Moon' is transformed into ethereal sensuality, her vocals pitched high in the closing moments . The other, a bonus track recorded in Austin (but in the middle of the album), is Hank Cochran's 'Why Can't He Be You?', a Patsy Cline torch ballad hit given a driving punk makeover with surging keyboards, snappy drums and Scott Clark on snotty guitar, not to mention MacDuffie bookending the track with splashes of ukulele. Pucker up and enjoy.

Mike Davies