Picks and Pans Review: Juliana Hatfield

updated 09/08/2008 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 09/08/2008 AT 01:00 AM EDT

How to Walk Away |

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Almost two decades after her confessional lyrics and self-deprecating charm made Juliana Hatfield a college-radio darling, the Boston-based singer, 41, returns with a 10th solo album that lacks the appealing quirkiness of her previous efforts. As always, Hatfield is happy to share her self-examinations, such as the relationship-gone-stale story of "My Baby ..." but bland ballads like "Remember November" weigh the album down. And instead of Hatfield's uniquely childlike vocals, she seems to have settled for a generic, overpolished sound, especially on "This Lonely Love," which feels like a Sheryl Crow reject.
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