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Doug and Telisha Williams

Ghost of the Knoxville Girl – 2009 (No Evil)

Reviewed by Don Armstrong

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CDs by Doug and Telisha Williams

Doug and Telisha Williams are a cute couple but an odd match - she inclined toward fire, he toward ice. On their second CD, they hide it well, with shared writing credits on every song and Telisha's low-cut, strapless dress, nose piercing and tat-or is it tats?-obscured, in a back-cover photograph, by Doug's guitar and more-conservative attire. When she opens her mouth, though, the cat's out the bag - and howling.

One suspects Telisha had a stronger hand in the writing of the rocking Graveyard Train and Unrepentant Sinner's Last Prayer than in the more subdued Kitchen Light and Learning to Drink Whiskey. Likewise with 20.2, about the Williamses' employment-challenged hometown of Martinsville, Va. and Last Call, both of which feature Doug on lead vocals. In truth, Telisha is at her best, her elastic, twangy voice its most expressive, in the midtempo numbers: Kitchen and Whiskey - perhaps because of a better blending of her talents with Doug's. His controlled delivery on Last Call, a classic Jesus-vs.-the-bottle shuffle, sneaks up on you but is, at the least, one of the highlights of this capable, varied disc.