Caroline Spence, 'Spades & Roses'
With her sophomore album Spades & Roses, Caroline Spence has proven she's more than capable of hanging with the best of Nashville's sizable singer-songwriter community. The follow-up to Spence's 2015 debut Somehow, Spades & Roses doubles down on what earned that initial collection comparisons to Americana heavyweights like Emmylou Harris: refined lyricism, careful attention to melody and unvarnished, vulnerable storytelling. Standout track "Softball" is especially timely, tackling music industry sexism with clever wordplay and nimble, crystalline vocals that back up Spence's claims of being able to "hit one out of the yard." B.M.