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Clearly Joy Williams has been on quite a journey since the split of The Civil Wars. Venus shares a bit of that journey which is full of vulnerability and power, big beats and quiet vocals and everything in-between. There are times when Joy Williams, the soloist, is reminiscent of the partner in The Civil Wars, but much of her work reaches out in new ways of expression. As the mythic Venus was born out of the sea, Ms. Williams’ career has a rebirth (her second since her Contemporary Christian artist days) and this album is indicative of that change. While I will deeply miss the harmonies of The Civil Wars, I’m excited about the new album and where Ms. Williams is heading. Yes, we hear her haunting, lilting voice that has the breathy fade which is so familiar, but we also hear her sing with a pop beat (and backing band) and with more power.

The album allows Joy Williams to fully come out on her own, highlighting her beautiful, modulating voice and her ability to bare her soul in words. It’s musically diverse, produced well with clearly more complexity than two singers and a guitar but not over-produced. It’s a great album which I encourage you to give it some real focused listening. It’s worth them time.

For full review: Vernus Track by Track Review