Second envelope-expanding album from roots-based US singer-songwriter
McKeown’s studio debut, Distillation, was a wonderful, homespun affair that sounded like a one-woman version of The Be Good Tanyas. The follow-up is even better?echoing with touches of brass, Hammond B3 and Django-style guitar. Grand also drips with old-fashioned pop melodies, all given a noirish charm to create a record of folk-jazz-hip-hop-country-rock-swing that doesn’t quite fit anywhere. There are perhaps hints of Rickie Lee Jones, Ani DiFranco, Dan Hicks and Tom Waits. But after just two albums proper, McKeown has forged a quite unique musical identity for herself.