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Ingrid Andress

Lady Like – 2020 (Warner Nashville)

Reviewed by Jeffrey B. Remz

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CDs by Ingrid Andress

When it comes to the love department, life seemingly has not very kind at all to Ingrid Andress. That's more than apparent for Andress on her eight-song EP debut. She sure thinks a lot about love and its associated problems, but nothing quite seems to go right when it comes to affairs of the heart. What does go right, however, are the songs.

Andress is unsure of a relationship's "blurred lines" ("Both") or just looking to rekindle a faded relationship and maybe change the outcome ("The Stranger"). Or make like she is the "Life of the Party," when she really isn't feeling it inside.

Andress, a singer/songwriter stylist, maintains a light vocal touch throughout, which toughens up as needed. Her delivery is potent, filled with a sense of loss, something that happens time and again when Cupid isn't your friend.

Perhaps no more so than on her piano-driven hit single, "More Hearts Than Mine," the most country-sounding song. Andress' vocal delivery glides through the highly relatable song, which paints a million pictures. Well-conceived, the song underscores that break-ups could affect more than the couple at hand.

She's understated at times, accentuating the vulnerability she realizes ("Both") before turning it up just enough to pour out her indignation.

Andress follows that right up on "We're Not Friends" that she and her man are more than that, but she just can't seem to move beyond that.

Andress offers a breezy Sheryl Crow vocal soundalike on the opening "Bad Advice." Interestingly, Andress put strings on the song, something you rarely hear today.

Perhaps it should be no surprise that Andress isn't your dyed-in-the-wool country singer. Not when you've penned songs for Bebe Rexha and Charli XCX. The sound here is almost entirely pop with nary a country sound. And it would be hard to even call this pop country.

No matter because Andress seems to know a thing or two about writing a batch of appealing songs.

By the end, Andress makes it clear in the anthemic title track (it sure is easy to imagine women singing along at the top of their lungs) that conventions be damned, she's going to do it her way.