Sarah Gayle Meech sings country music, and she sings it with an abiding, raspy timbre that’s evocative of the likes of Shelby Lynne and the great Sammi Smith. If the ’70s countrypolitan flavor of her sophomore album’s string-sweetened title song and the relaxed country-soul vibe of “Stormy Weather” are any indication, she’s done some listening to Smith’s records too. There are plenty of other old-school flavors represented here as well: hard-country dueting (with Joshua Hedley on “True Love”) and drinking (“The Loneliest Place in Town” — a bar, of course); some propulsive electric bluegrass (“Love of Mine“) and a little south-of-the-border (“At the Bar Again”); spit-and-vinegar rockabilly (“No Mess”), outlaw country (“Little Black Hole”), and twin-fiddle swing (“Get It Over”). “Tennessee Love Song” is a variegated testament to Meech’s facility as a songwriter and to the players she assembled to make it, but what makes its songs crackle is that voice. (Out now)
ESSENTIAL “Stormy Weather“
Sarah Gayle Meech plays at Atwood’s Tavern on May 3.Stuart Munro can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.