LeAnn Rimes

Remnants – 2017 (Thirty Tigers)

Reviewed by Dan MacIntosh

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CDs by LeAnn Rimes

LeAnn Rimes' "Remnants" album sounds inspired by contemporary times. The title track takes on almost an apocalyptic quality. Lyrically, a lot of these songs - many of which Rimes had a hand in writing - address a dire need for love. We do live in a world where love oftentimes seems to be in short supply. Therefore, three of these songs have "love" in their titles, with one repeating the word three times for good measure.

Although Rimes began her career as a young, Patsy Cline sound-alike, much of her career has been spent creating much pop-ier sounds. For instance, "Love is Love is Love," with its upbeat handclaps, would sound just as natural on Top 40 radio, as it would among country hits. Rimes also released music to the Christian market in her early days, but likely won't be as welcomed there now. This is especially because "Do It Wrong with Me" drops an F-bomb, something rarely heard in country music and an absolute no-no in the religious sector. Without its potty-mouthed portion, however, this gospel-y sounding track nicely reminds one of Aretha Franklen's soulful '60s/'70s heyday.

Rimes sings wonderfully and sounds inspired throughout. And even at this relatively late stage in the game, Rimes still has the ability to surprise and impress. For instance, "Give Me Something (I Can't Give Myself)" finds the singer singing staccato notes in an unbelievably high register - with perfect pitch control. She is truly a natural wonder, as a singer.

" Remnants" is a strong album because Rimes invested so much personal creativity in the writing and performance. One must wonder how the conservative mainstream country audience will react to these songs, though, which are oftentimes confrontational toward social norms. Whether it's embraced or not, though, Rimes has good reason to be proud of this one.