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Corinne Bailey Rae 

The Sea

A year after Corinne Bailey Rae's invigorating 2006 debut, she lost her husband to a drug overdose. The Sea was recorded all over England: a farm in Yorkshire, a church in Leeds. It contains sadness, resolve and tenderness. With some ace players on board, Bailey Rae chips in on everything from guitar to glockenspiel. "The Blackest Lily" jumps in that uniquely Brit B3 organ style. The pacing could use more of that. You will find a lyric like "so young for death," or "goodbye paradise," not necessarily part of a dirge. She shares an experience without dulling the luminescence that made her mark.

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