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Gin Wigmore, Gravel & Wine (Polydor)

The name is Gin, but beer provided the breakthrough.

Yes, this is the lady singing on the train in the most recent Bond-themed television ad for a certain green-bottled beverage. It's odd, though, that this album release was delayed and won't quite reap the benefits of the high-profile exposure gifted to her single Man Like That.

Gravel & Wine couldn't be a better fit for a particularly lucrative market if it had been pieced together by a huddle of record industry marketing men in lab coats. Rhythmically, Wigmore is rolling with Adele; stylistically, she's rocking with Imelda May; vocally, she shares a helium ballpark with Duffy and Macy Gray.

But before you dismiss the album for its copycat crimes, note that it actually came out more than a year ago in Wigmore's native New Zealand, where her 2009 album, Holy Smoke, gained triple platinum status. Mostly it's swinging rock'n'roll driven by a tribal beat and a few too many "hoowah" chants from the male backing vocalists.

The songs are strong, but it really needs those occasional ballad breathers to break up what would otherwise be a rather repetitive party playlist.

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