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CD Review: Lissie

Catching a Tiger (Fat Possum)

It's tough to figure out where Lissie Maurus' heart and sound lie. Is she a midwestern girl born and raised in Illinois or a transplanted Californian? Is the DIY folk pop on last year's debut EP her thing, or is it the grandiose pop on her first full-length? Unlike the sultry folk Lissie displayed on last year's Why You Runnin' EP, Catching a Tiger benefits from an empire's worth of sheen from producer Jacquire King, who strips songs like "In Sleep" and "Cuckoo" of their grit. Histrionics are substituted for true emotions throughout, especially in the overwrought and over-wordy "When I'm Alone." The best songs (particularly "Little Lovin'") are lifted directly from the singer-songwriter's EP, which favored a warmer and more organic approach. There's plenty of time for Lissie to decide who she wants to be. Here's hoping she learns from this album's mistakes.

Chris Drabick

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