Picks and Pans Review: Volcano

updated 11/03/2003 at 01:00 AM EST

originally published 11/03/2003 01:00AM

Edie Brickell

[STARS 3]

On "Rush Around," the wistful waltz that opens Volcano, Edie Brickell could well be explaining why it has been nine years since her last solo album, Picture Perfect Morning: "I remember thinking this just can't be right/ Got to be a better way to live your life/ Slow like a soft southern breeze/ Nobody take time to breathe." The former frontwoman of the New Bohemians took an extended break from recording to raise her three kids with husband Paul Simon. But the singer-songwriter didn't lose her knack for crafting smart, soothing folk pop. Songs such as "Once in a Blue Moon" are perfect for a rainy day, with Brickell adding a dash of jazz here, a sprinkle of country there. The results can sometimes get a bit too sleepy, the pleasures a bit too subtle, but the hushed beauty of "What Would You Do" leaves no question that it's good to have Brickell back.

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