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GUNSLINGER Garth Brooks Pearl/Sony www.garth­brooks.comg

Af­ter a re­tire­ment of sorts, notably be­tween the years 2001 and 2014, Garth Brooks re­turned to reg­u­larl record­ingdi a few years ago, re­leas­ing Man Against Ma­chine. His lat­est al­bum Gunslinger sticks with his tried and true for­mula of blend­ing coun­try and rock. Brooks again de­liv­ers the goods, notably on the up­beat sin­gle ‘Baby, Let’s Lay Down and Dance’. He brings back the west­ern swing sound for ‘Honky-Tonk Some­where’ and gets into hol­i­day mode on the vi­brant ‘Week­end’. Brooks has al­ways been adept at pow­er­ful pi­ano-backed bal­lads, and he re­turns to the well on ‘He Re­ally Loves You’, a song that builds in vol­ume and in­ten­sity. And there’s a drink­ing song too – the waltz-timed ‘Whiskey To Wine’, a duet with wife Tr­isha Year­wood.

DRAGONFLY Kasey Cham­bers Warner Mu­sic www.warn­ermu www.warn­er­mu­

Dragonfly is stu­dio al­bum num­ber 11 for Kasey Cham­bers, that tally in­clud­ing her two col­lab­o­ra­tive al­bums with Shane Ni­chol­son. Dragonfly, how­ever, is two al­bums in one. A dou­ble CD set, the first disc was recorded at Paul Kelly’s Sing Sing Stu­dios, with Kelly in the pro­ducer’s chair. Kelly joins Cham­bers for a duet on ‘Hey’, and Ir­ish­man Foy Vance adds vo­cals to the folk-styled ‘Romeo & Juliet’. On disc two, she links with brother and reg­u­lar pro­ducer Nash Cham­bers, plus a sprin­kling of guest vo­cal­ists, in­clud­ing Keith Ur­ban for the sen­si­tive bal­lad ‘If We Had A Child’, and blues­man Harry Hookey plus Vika and Linda Bull for the rag­time sound of ‘No Or­di­nary Man’. Dragonfly is a fives­tar ef­fort from Cham­bers and pos­si­bly her best al­bum so far.

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