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CD Review: Maura Rogers & the Bellows

A Good Heart Will Break (self-released)

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Singer-guitarist Maura Rogers has spent the last couple of years coping with serious health issues (she just recently underwent a kidney transplant), and in the lyrics here you can hear the emotional toll that has taken on her. On "Cowboy Song," she sings about getting "caught up in a memory" and her frustrating search for true love. While it doesn't stray from themes expressed in the other songs, the rave-up "Good Harm" provides a good kick in the pants as Rogers lets the band loose; she has to really wail just to be heard above the din. The accordion-driven "Something More" has a good, freewheeling energy, too. The album-closing "What the Doctor Said" is a somber autobiographical ballad in which Rogers says she would "rather go out singing" than take the doctor's orders and put aside her music. It's a triumphant final statement that really rings true. – Jeff Niesel

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