Jenny Lewis, Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh ****
Musically, her sound takes heartbreak country as its template, while filtering it through the underground Americana boom of the 2000s. In fact, the Las Vegas-born, California-raised (where she made an early living as a child actor) Lewis was a part of this boom, both solo and with her now-defunct band Rilo Kiley.
While her most recent albums The Voyager (2014) and this year’s On the Line have led her to mainstream success, and formed the bulk of this set, there was a lovely flashback moment when she played Rilo Kiley’s With Arms Outstretched, backed by sparse electric guitar and lit only by the glow of many dozens of mobile phones.
Amid every subtle change in style Lewis and her band cycled through, her music was precise and appealing, from the easy country groove of Do Si Do to the near-funk rhythms of Little White Dove, with Lewis tapping out a cowbell solo as pink and blue balloons rained upon the crowd. There was a stark gospel weight to Born Secular, a raw edge of bar-room blues to See Fernando and a sparse, sexual balladry to Dogwood, while amid it all her lyricism – particularly on She’s Not Me and the resonant One of the Guys – evoked a precise fusion of heartbreak and emotional power. - David Pollock