Remember one night it was drizzling rain
Round my heart, I felt a pain
Fare thee well, oh honey,
Fare thee well
This is Hester’s third album (and her second self-titled album) and this is the album that features a pre-fame Bob Dylan on three tracks on the album. Hester’s expanding her palette a bit. Dylan’s on three tracks with his harmonica (no vocals) and there’s a bass and a fiddle that pop up from time to time as well, plus, I think, a second acoustic guitar. It is, however, a step backwards in quality. After actually managing a few great songs (though not a great album) with her previous record, Hester’s back to mostly poor song selection and lackadaisical performances. Of particular note is Yarrow, a Hester original that runs an interminable six-minutes of low, cooing vocals and lightly plucked acoustic guitar. There’s really not a memorable song on this one, except maybe her performance of Dink’s Song which is mainly good because it’s such a beautiful song on its own. It won’t replace the Llewyn Davis version, that’s for sure. She also re-records Virgin Mary. After that clanger of a high-note the last time she recorded this song, she’s got something to prove and she goes for it, even choosing it as the final track. If she mangles that final note this time, it’ll end not just the song, but the whole album on a literal sour note. But she gets it this time. Good for her. Good for her and fare thee well; I doubt I’ll be listening to this one again. 1 ½ stars.
tl;dr – somewhat expanded palette includes a pre-fame Bob Dylan on harmonica, but there’s not a single memorable track; mostly harmless, but why bother? 1 ½ stars.