Chris Willman
May 09, 2005 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Ride

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
performer
Malik Yoba, Melissa DeSousa
genre
Comedy

We gave it a B+

She’s got chops. A chopper, maybe, too; the title track of this Mississippi lass’ debut, Ride, posits her as the biker girl next door, straining to hear Haggard and Skynyrd over the engine’s roar. Those are appropriate touchstones for an album skirting the virtually bygone line between country and Southern rock, possibly the last genres where you might hear a voice this powerful forgo Idolatrous melisma. Bless the belter who knows to start at a low boil — literally and figuratively, in the humidity-drenched opener, ”Kiss Me” — before burning Dixie rubber. If the finale proves Fairchild can also carry off a pop ballad, well, more rpm to her.

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