Portland singer-songwriter Rachel Taylor Brown returns with a series of heavy, piano-driven tunes that are relentless in their exploration of emotionally-charged dark places. Brown is one of those rare songwriters who would probably be just at home writing for the theater––or performing in it––given her ability to create distinct characters for each of the 13 tracks here. She inhabits her vocal performances, imbuing each one with a force and fury that is both frightening and cathartic. Key tracks include “Sister Jean”, about an Oregon girl who died of abuse and neglect; “Modesto Waltz”, which is one of several featured here that hints at a possible flirtation with the Beatles somewhere in Brown’s past; and the daring “Your Big Mouth”, featuring some of the nastiest bass ever committed to, uh, tape, thanks to Justin Harris. Unfaltering and brave in its undertaking World So Sweet is a welcome exploration of the darkness that surrounds.