Kathleen Edwards: A Gallery Of Drama
Before Kathleen Edwards has sung a word, it's clear that "Change the Sheets" is a song about heartbreak. There's immediate anxiety in the synthesizer refrain that opens the track, a wobbliness, paced in the next instant by drums, and then there's some kind of doubling effect: the bass falling in, or a second synthesizer, or a choir of humming ghosts. Whatever it is, it swiftly builds to urgency. By the time Edwards sings, "My love took a ride on red-eye plane, going home," the listener is well ahead of her. You're already hurtling down through your own personal gallery of major exes, the ones who were actually pretty great, and who you maybe — okay, definitely — still miss once and awhile. But, given the way it ended, that phone had better remain in the cradle.
If that all sounds dramatic, well, shouldn't it?
At the same time, it's not corny. Edwards' confessions are too spiky and too precise: "My love is a stockpile of broken wills / Like Sante Fe, margaritas and sleeping pills / I wanna lie in the cracks of this lonely road." The whole story is encapsulated in three lines: broken promises, that terrible time and, now, this awful guilt. It might help to change the sheets, but don't count on it.
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