Wildflower

Studio Album by released in 2005

Wildflower review

She's sold millions of records, she's engaged to an American sporting hero and, at the age of 43, she still looks better than some women half her age. Yet on Wildflower, Sheryl Crow still sounds down. Three years on from the sun drenched, radio-friendly C'mon C'mon, Crow's taken a 180 degree turn - her new album is light on the good-time country blues that made her name and heavy on the sad, wistful ballads. Wildflower, probably rates among the most pensive of Sheryl Crow's career but remains a thoroughly enjoyable listen to boot. There is something effortlessly calming about her glistening vocals that bring with them a welcome and knowing sense of familiarity. If C'mon C'mon was a cheerful, bright record ideal for sunny summer days, Wildflower is its opposite, a warm, introspective record that's tailored for the fall.

First single Good Is Good is instantly recognizable as Sheryl Crow, and sees her once again writing with long-time collaborator Jeff Trott, who also co-penned Everyday Is A Winding Road, If It Makes You Happy and My Favorite Mistake. Trott also plays some Dylan-esque slide guitar on Good Is Good, lending the whole track a mid-tempo 70’s feel. The orchestrations on the album are lush thanks to David Campbell (whose son, intriguingly, goes by the name of Beck). A future single, I Know Why, opens the album in similarly impressive fashion, this time incorporating some banjo. The title track is a beautifully intimate number, featuring just Crow, an acoustic guitar and Campbell's unobtrusive string section. One of the best tracks on the album, Where Has All The Love Gone, is a poignant look at the United States. It's a sad, yet hopeful song, which sounds even more effective in the acoustic version at the end of the album. Live It Up is a great, up-tempo rocker that could easily sit on Crow's classic self-titled album. It opens in lively fashion and boasts some cheeky, ironic lyrics that give way into a genuinely rousing chorus.

Intelligent, provocative and enchanting Wildflower blossoms into one of Crow's finest albums to date. It will provide the perfect soundtrack to a balmy autumn evening, with Crow producing an album of instant classics. Its eleven tracks are a set of beautifully crafted songs rich with soaring choruses, heartfelt lyrics and wonderfully lush orchestration. Since her 1993 debut, Tuesday Night Music Club, Sheryl Crow has been churning out unassailably appealing albums in an unassailably appealing voice. Wildflower moves Sheryl Crow one step closer to Hall of Fame status. It's a timely reminder that she's one of America's more talented songwriters working today.