As is so often the case with American artists whose appeal isn't exactly straight down the middle, Caitlin Rose was initially more successful overseas than in her homeland. But it's not as tragic a tale as it might sound, since "initially" refers only to the period of time during which her entire output consisted of her debut EP, Dead Flowers. The arrival of the young singer/songwriter's first full-length release, Own Side Now, represents a chance for Rose's sound to find wider acceptance stateside. Don't be misled by the stylish image on the front cover, which might lead you to conclude that Rose is some sort of Zooey Deschanel-esque ingénue peddling overly precious goods; the Nashville native needs no M. Ward to fill in the artistic gaps for her. Rose's own songwriting gifts are on ample display throughout Own Side Now, with lyrics that show a knack for poetic turns and artful understatement in equal measure -- a combination too seldom found in young songwriters' work -- and humble but hummable melodies that make the most of her grounding in both alt-country and pop. Interestingly, while most of the album mines a gently twangy Americana feel, one of the most overtly country-ish moments comes with a cover of the Stevie Nicks-penned Fleetwood Mac track "That's Alright." As it turns out, Rose's lissome croon carries the tune with more élan than the original version, so maybe she's got something to say to the classic-rock crowd too.
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AllMusic Review by James Allen