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Shannon McArdle

Summer of the Whore

Bar None

The album name Summer of the Whore can only mean one of two things: 1. The artist is really self-deprecating or 2. Luther Campbell has a new album out. Seeing that this is by former The Mendoza Line singer Shannon McArdle, I would say that her depression has taken the best of her and laid it bare on this debut solo album.

McArdle was the lead singer of The Mendoza Line for about a decade before she dissolved the band, partially because of her divorce from fellow group member Timothy Bracy. This album is as achingly beautiful as it is raw.

The lead single "Poison My Cup" is a brutal look at infidelity, telling her fling, "I know I've done enough damage, baby/ But I'm not through/... / Don't have to tell me you love me, baby/ I'll still go down." The title track echoes those sentiments and the sparse acoustic sound. It's obvious that the divorce was lying heavy on her as she wrote, "All these months since he left me have emptied me out to the core/ To fill me up/ Must declare it the Summer of the Whore."

Summer of the Whore shows Shannon McArdle at her most vulnerable. It also shows her lyrically at her best. This album is not a feel-good affair, but it is lyrically amazing and something that is worth hearing at least once if only to get an idea of what cheating and heartbreak really sound like. This is raw emotion exposed for all to hear.

Shannon McArdle: www.shannonmcardlemusic.com