[26 February 2008]
PopMatters Contributing Editor
After winning over crowds in her native Australia, Missy Higgins makes her U.S. debut with the mightily tuneful On a Clear Night. She dives into the seemingly bottomless well of singer-songwriter clichés and surfaces with an assured set of compositions. Producer Mitchell Froom maintains the integrity of the songs and wisely steers the album away from glossy studio tricks. The dynamic range of the tracks is not overly compressed either, affording many sonic delights at close listen. “100 Round The Bends”, “Steer”, and “The Wrong Girl” are just a few examples of how perfect a match Froom is for Higgins. Though the symmetry of rhymes is sometimes inconsistent, Higgins knows how to write a memorable melody. Fans of Feist and KT Tunstall will warm most to On a Clear Night but Higgins will hopefully be appreciated on the merits of her own considerable artistry.