Artist: Matraca Berg
Album: Love's Truck Stop
Label: Proper Records
Matraca Berg already has three Grammy award nominations under her belt but the singer song-writer is back this week with her new album Love's Truck Stop.
Berg has written for a whole host of artists over the years but now she is back making her own music... and this is a fantastic record.
Love's Truck Stop is the opening track on the album and there is a real country feel to this song as she beautifully uses the pedal steel guitar.
This is an album packed with stories and that is evident in Her Names Is Mary - which is about a twenty year old waitress who is struggling getting by.
Berg paints a very vivid picture of this young woman and she really brings her and her struggles to life with her words.
Her Name Is Mary is a track that just allows Berg's voice to soar as the guitar and the strings are the perfect accompaniment and yet not overpowering.
There is a darker feel to Dark Ribbons as there is quite a harsh sound to the backing instrumentation on this track.
And that dark theme continues with the haunting Magdalene as she sings about a woman caught up in the world of prostitution.
This is one of the strongest songs on the album as it deliveries a message with such an emotional punch.
And while songs like this and Her Name Is Mary do have a darkness to them Berg is clearly fascinated by the strength of women and how they find a way to survive.
The vocal on Magdalene is simply beautiful and the stripped back feel really is incredibly powerful.
Love's Truck Stop is an album that is a mixture of light and dark as Berg goes from upbeat tracks to tackling some serious issues through her music.
She creates characters and scenarios as a way to explore not only social issues but also her own emotions - and it is done with such a moving sincerity.
Matraca Berg has delivered an incredibly beautiful album that shows off not only her stunning vocal but also her writing skills.
From start to finish Love's Truck Stop is an engaging album and is one that is not to be missed.
Matraca Berg - Love's Truck Stop is out now
FemaleFirst Helen Earnshaw