Picks and Pans Review: Don't Fence Me in

updated 02/26/1996 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 02/26/1996 AT 01:00 AM EST

Lari White

On her third album, Florida-born country singer-songwriter Lari White gutsily serves up two wildly diverse takes on Cole Porter's 50-year-old-plus title tune and, in between, delivers an aggressive mix of brawlers and bawlers. White, who co-produced the set, kicks off with a brief Andrews Sisters-esque "Fence" teaser (assisted on vocals by Trisha Yearwood and the underrated Shelby Lynne) and reprises the song later as a frantic, full-length stomper.

The singer dabbles in other genres too, as on the acoustic "Soul Searchin' Blues" (a longer, complete version curiously offered as a final "hidden" track, not listed on the CD's packaging), and growls and wails alongside a rampaging rhythm section on the rockabilly-tinged "Wild at Heart." To be sure, White's sassy vocals and musical risk-taking are proof that she's got the strength and talent to free herself from the limited commercial confines of today's country landscape. (RCA)

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