Oh, Canada. How excellent you are at producing worthy, intelligent female singer-songwriters. Jenny Whiteley is another in a long line of Canuck-born musicians that lay their heart on wax for all to see, and do so without pomp and circumstance. There are no layers of sticky, gooey honey that have to be removed from Dear and there is no sap to be found. But there are genuine emotions delivered by Whiteley’s deep, unhurried vocals, and some sweetly picked guitar to set it all off.
While Whiteley’s style is not for everyone, some might be surprised by the singer’s genre-spanning ways, which manifest in ways such as opting to include a brilliant cover of the Kinks’ “Heart of Gold” (and no, that’s not a misprint—The Kinks, not Neil Young!). With all the critical acclaim Whiteley’s been receiving for her second solo release, it’s almost guaranteed that the 12 tracks of Dear will open up the veteran musician to an even wider set of fans.