Album Reviews

Kristy Cox

Ricochet

Artist:     Kristy Cox

Album:     Ricochet

Label:     Mountain Fever

Release Date:     1.19.18

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The bloodless, broken relationship depicted in the forlorn and decidedly rustic “A Bed This Cold,” off bluegrass and gospel darling Kristy Cox’s new album Ricochet, is almost certainly a lost cause. Her partnership with Grammy-winning producer/songwriter Jerry Salley, on the other hand, has a brighter future.

Their past recordings have been showered with critical praise, and Cox and Salley have struck gold again with Ricochet, where contemporary production burnishes warm, traditional instrumentation and lives in wedded bliss with graceful harmonies and engaging country-pop songcraft. If the heat has gone out in “A Bed This Cold” —an affecting, unflinching dissection of eroded intimacy wrapped in thin, tattered acoustic folk and pained vocals that practically shiver—the deliriously sunny and upbeat “South to North Carolina” offers a fun summer road trip. A whirling dervish of countrified strings and irresistible escapism, it is just as lively and infectious as the jumping title track.

Dancing with Cox’s honeyed crooning throughout the rest of Ricochet, a meticulously woven mix of soft-textured dobro, fiddle, mandolin and banjo make the bittersweet incandescence of “Right Where You Left It” swoon and smoothly guide her carefree gait and empowered defiance in “Just Me Leaving.” Known for her hopeful, angelic sweetness, Cox sings with a growing maturity and beguiling sophistication on Ricochet that’s more in tune with worldly realities. Although the lighthearted “Blame It on God” and a more somber “I Still Pray” let everyone know that Cox still looks to the heavens for inspiration and strength.

—Peter Lindblad

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