with Brett Detar
Friday, Nov 01, 2013 7:00 PM CDT
(6:00 PM Doors)
SPACE, Evanston, IL
Nashville beckoned, and Lindi Ortega answered the call.
Armed with an inimitable, irresistible singing voice The Independent hails as “a truly magnificent instrument,” and a heart bursting with creative ambition, the Canadian songstress whom American Songwriter calls “the love child of Johnny Cash and Nancy Sinatra” decided to relocate to Music City from her native Toronto to birth her brand new musical offspring, Cigarettes & Truckstops.
A logical follow-up to her 2011 critically acclaimed alt-country masterpiece Little Red Boots, the 10-song Cigarettes & Truckstops further flaunts Ortega’s distinctive vision; one that embraces the oft-neglected, politically incorrect realism of traditional country and frames it in a charmingly, and sometimes darkly humourous contemporary context.
Bookended by a couple of romantic road ballads in the title track and the reflective “Every Mile Of The Ride,” Cigarettes & Truckstops further evolves the promise foreshadowed by the JUNO-Award nominated-and-Polaris-Music-Prize-long-listed Little Red Boots.
The writing is stellar, her musical discipline undoubtedly galvanized by a fearless 2010-2012 tour schedule that saw Lindi open for a variety of acts, from punk vets Social Distortion; pop icon Burton Cummings; country fave Dierks Bentley; folk outfit Noah & The Whale and Academy Award winner Kevin Costner with attention-grabbing finesse, making serious inroads with North American and European audiences, and prompting Exclaim! to declare Ortega an “electrifying” performer.
Whether it’s the plucky shuffle of the hilarious “The Day You Die;” the angry harrumph of “Don’t Wanna Hear It;” the high lonesome feel of “Heaven Has No Vacancy” or the haunting twang of guilt that is “Murder
of Crows,” Ortega continues to deliver a refreshing twist that walks vintage and contemporary lines in imaginative and inventive manners.