"Life?" asks Victoria Woodworth. "Mine's a mess. That's how I like it." This take-it-as-it-comes attitude regularly shakes up Faultline, an impressive new disc that's being celebrated this week by a trio of CD-release shows: Wednesday, October 1, at the Lion's Lair, with Luther Wright & the Wrongs; Thursday, October 2, at Paco's in Idaho Springs; and Saturday, October 4, at the Larimer Lounge, with John Common's Awful Liars. The album is credited to Victoria Woodworth & Friends, and she does indeed have some fairly prominent pals. In addition to the assistance of her band, the Heroes, she receives contributions from Firefall veteran Jock Bartley and Nobody in Particular Presents' Doug Kauffman -- on hand as a bass player, not a promoter. Still, Woodworth is the star of this particular show, contributing a passel of heartfelt, hard-country compositions and belting them out with the sort of authenticity that Faith Hill couldn't muster even if she were given a decade to try. Highlights (and there are plenty of them) include the soaring "San Andreas"; the mournful "Faithful," keyed by Michael Shay's full-bodied cello; and "Paris," about a black mood in the City of Lights. Sure, Woodworth's singing on these and other cuts can be a touch eccentric, but that's a big part of her charm. Her songs aren't neat and tidy, and neither is life.
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