BY LEE ZIMMERMAN
Ever since the start of her recording career more than fifteen years ago, Kris Delmhorst has quickly ascended the uppermost rungs of today’s new folk hierarchy, acquiring an enviable reputation for songs that are pensive, stirring and insightful. That skill set is especially evident on her seventh album — and her first in more than five years — Blood Test, an evocative set of songs conveyed from that knowing point of view.
Indeed, this New York born/Western Massachusetts dwelling denizen boasts a seductive style and gift for quiet contemplation, and it’s those qualities that imbue songs such as “My Ohio,” “Homeless” and “92nd Street” with both their poignant perspective and easy allure. Still, Delmhorst isn’t one to allow any darker designs to wholly define her persona; instead of dwelling simply and completely on reflection and sobriety, she turns tunes like “We Deliver,” “Temporary Sun” and “Bright Green World” into festive forays — upbeat, demonstrative and celebratory in attitude and delivery.
Credit producer Anders Parker for imbuing just the right amount of circumspect, navigating that delicate divide between the suggestive and the sublime.
DOWNLOAD: “My Ohio,” “We Deliver,” “Temporary Sun”