96kHz/24-bit, FLAC; Concord Records CRE00629 (supplied by www.highresaudio.com)

You can’t really argue with any album that, on release, hit No 1 on the Billboard Blue Albums chart, but here goes: you see, while guitarist/singer Nicole’s second album sounds exciting on first encounter, much of that is achieved by the fact it hits the peak-level end-stops more or less throughout. Nicole combines straight-down-the-line Kansas blues with her undeniably powerful voice, with her regular band joined by guest musicians of the calibre of Kenny Wayne Shepherd (on ‘Save Me’) and Walter Trout, whose guitar opens ‘Burnin’ For You’, while the set-closer ‘Lord I Just Can’t Keep From Crying’ starts effectively with just drums and Nicole’s vocals. Those track titles may well tell you all you need to know about the album’s tone, as will the title track’s ‘other woman’ defiance. Unfortunately, that makes it thematically almost as samey as that constricted sound. AE

Sound Quality: 70%

Hi-Fi News Lab Report

Recorded at Ultratone Studios, mixed and mastered at CMG (Concord Music Group), this dense offering spends rather too long in the ‘top bit’ of its dynamic range, with evidence of clipped samples. It is a 96kHz rendering though! PM