Which song from Shannon Whitworth’s new album, High Tide, are you going to add to your Best-of-2013 playlist? Tough call, since the South Carolina singer-songwriter’s third album is top-to-bottom sturdy—10 dusky, dreamy songs about ephemeral romance, delivered in Whitworth’s relaxed alto.
The easy money is on the toe-tapping single “You Are in Love”, but the languid “Don’t Lie”, the Cat Power-esque “Not August Evening” and the sweet, melodic “Another Time” will vie for your attention. For the most part, Whitworth repurposes her string-band origins into dark, wet-echo Americana, all subtle guitar and brushstrokes, and the songs are witching-hour lovely. The album ends with a driftwood version of Dire Straits’ “So Far Away”, which is interesting enough, but High Tide proves that Whitworth doesn’t need any help from clever covers.