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Kim Lenz and the Jaguars

The One and Only – 1999 (HighTone)

Reviewed by Jon Johnson

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CDs by Kim Lenz and the Jaguars

The all-important sophomore album from Kim Lenz finds her with an entirely different set of Jaguars which, as it turns out, makes all the difference in the world. Lenz' 1998 debut was a decent record, with good songs and solid monophonic production from Fly Rite Boys bassist Wally Hersom (back at the board this time, along with Big Sandy himself), but the 98 Jaguars had a lighter touch than the more aggressive 99 line-up, particularly lead guitarist Nick Curran.

Lenz also is more willing to bring in outside material, including versions of Sonny Burgess' "Flame of Love," David Houston's "One and Only" and "Comin' Back Strong," a catchy contribution from Fly Rite Boys pianist Carl Sonny Leyland (who also contributes some fine piano work). Also noteworthy is one of two contributions from Big Sandy, "Somebody Lied," a top-notch number that's instantly recognizable as one of his compositions.

Finally. Lenz herself sounds great, with sassy, confident vocals that are miles ahead of almost any other contemporary female rockabilly singer (with the possible exception of Marti' Brom). No sophomore slump here.