Album Review

Blues and booze find comfort in Karen Caruso's whiskey lament

Karen Caruso - Whiskey in the Bottle

"Heaven knows I need a drink," confesses Karen Caruso on "Whiskey in the Bottle." Caruso's intoxicating brew of blues and country creates the appropriate atmosphere for this lover's lament. While soaking in alcohol after a painful break-up doesn't bust genre conventions, there is comfort in the familiar as well. But "Whiskey in the Bottle" shouldn't be judged for its content alone. The song is a killer vehicle in showcasing Caruso's vocal skills; she sounds like a broken angel with a chip on her shoulder. Sad and bruised, Caruso lets her bar tab fly. Why this isn't on the soundtrack to Jessica Jones on Netflix yet is an injustice.

Musically, the track has an acoustic undertow with a robust foundation that bridges Americana with adult alternative. The song has a deceptive smoothness to it as Caruso's emotions are spiked with sharp edges; her agony is uneasy listening yet compelling and real. "You used to tell me that you love," she sings with palpable sorrow. Pour another glass then. And Caruso remains unapologetic, no political correctness. "With that shot of liquid courage/I'm going to wash away this pain," she explains in this fiery tale of booze and the blues. Drink up.