Shannon McNally @ Headliners

Friday, March 25

Headliners
1386 Lexington Road • 584-8088
$17 (adv.), $20 (door); 8 p.m.

It’s always been her own vision behind the music, but by now, Shannon McNally has thoroughly established an indelible style on record and in concert. Not only does that put the stake in the never-shoulda-happened Sheryl Crow comparisons, it lets McNally feel easy about taking little detours like the one that brings her to Headliners. Her brand-new album Western Ballad has just come out, but she’s eschewing the typical “where can we headline with the full band?” tour for acoustic pair-up shows with bluesman J.J. Grey. The calling card for McNally’s new album is a title track written by Allen Ginsberg, but the effect of that winding song is matched by many solid collaborations with producer-guitarist Mark Bingham. Sometimes McNally’s best moments are when her reedy voice latches on to the melodic countryside of roots-rock, but she keeps you intrigued with stretches of questing, philosophical lyrics, which she sometimes complements with her own quixotic guitar solos. —T.E. Lyons

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