Freakwater: Scheherazade


Freakwater’s first studio album in more than a decade, “Scheherazade,” is a hard-hitting crossroads of masterful lyrics, just-the-right-amount-of-catchy melodies and high-powered, expansive harmonies — and, unlike some of their contemporaries, they’ve remained attached to the rooted country sensibilities they started with. As usual, a dark cloud hovers over the songs on “Scheherazade,” but, like all the best melancholy music, it makes you hang on to every lyric. Promoting raw emotion and musical ambition above production perfection, this record has a gritty feel to it that reflects the writing, something country music could use more of on all fronts — alt, radio, Americana, roots and whatever other sub-genres that have recently been made up included.