Like Lucinda Williams but with softer edges, Rose fuses country, honky-tonk and smoldering pop into something all her own. She has one of those rough, been-through-a-lot kind of voices, but she's careful not to overplay it. On Wheels Going By, an ode to summer driving and radio listening, and the jokey lover's plea See How I Need You, she positively purrs. When the brooding comes on Good Man, Rose nails it, singing something close to the perfect song as she asks her lover to "jump that hedgerow/ I'll jump this bedroom window/ Together we'll go and just ride, ride, ride." Only a fool wouldn't take her up on the offer.
--By Josh Tyrangiel