Review: Jenny Lewis

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Jenny Lewis
Rabbit Fur Coat
(Team Love)

In between backing Gibbard in Postal Service, stopping hearts with Rilo Kiley, opening for Cold Play and bringing indie kids to their knees everywhere, Jenny Lewis still has time to release a solo album that sounds fresh and gritty. With some encouragement from a friend named Conor, Lewis decided to release this smattering of solo material she had been working on. The songs have distant echoes of Loretta Lynn and Neko Case, but Lewis stands mostly on her own. Also featured throughout the CD are the Watson twins. The Watsons are a pair from Kentucky who harmonize like their singing from the same throat. Their gothic/gospel inspiration floats under Lewis throughout the CD while she lays her vocals down like honey. “Handle With Care” sees some of indie’s big guns come out for some support. Ben Gibbard, M. Ward and Conor Oberst all sing back-up to Lewis as she gives new life to Traveling Wilburys’ classic. For the nights when your girlfriend won’t come home or your old acoustic guitar finally cracked, Lewis will hold your hand. When the album is sad it feels like a hug from a friend at a funeral, but when it’s happy it feels like fingers in your hair. Is there anything Lewis can’t do?