Christa Couture‘s website describes here as a singer, a songwriter, a storyteller, a cyborg, a halfbreed, a knitter, a whiskey drinker, and then some. Add to all that The Georgia Straight’s declaration that she’s “criminally under-rated” and really, what’s left to say about her?

How about “eternal optimist”? On Couture’s latest release, Long Time Leaving, she manages to make even the most dour of experiences sound sweet and upbeat. It is a break-up album for all intents and purposes, but it’s hard to separate Couture’s personal history–losing her left leg to cancer and battling with the disease through her teens and living through the death of both her children under different circumstances before each had reached the age of two–from the “relatively ordinary heartache of divorce”. Still, Couture’s songwriting is poised and effortless, filled with sweet melodies and her irresistible spirit.