Dolly Parton’s newest release, Pure & Simple, feels like a safe cocoon you’d want to crawl into at the end of a long, hard day. The country music legend’s 43rd studio album is a collection of love songs that exudes warmth and cosiness.
Right from the start, her voice, tender and familiar, greets listeners on the title track, about a true love that is uncomplicated and unconditional.
Indeed, many of the song’s on the 10-track album such as Never Not Love You and Forever Love has to do with Parton promising her lover forever, giving an unwavering sense of assurance and safety.
There is a distinct feeling of all things good and hopeful, whether she’s singing about preparing for a date at night in Head Over High Heels or encouraging one to leave the past behind and look ahead in Tomorrow Is Forever.
There’s also Kiss It (And Make It All Better) which is like a salve applied on cuts and wounds we get along life’s journey.
Were it another singer, these inspirational lyrics can come off cheesy. But there is an earnestness in her delivery which makes all the difference.
Musically, Parton isn’t bothered by the need to sound contemporary, sticking to traditional country sounds – mandolins, banjos and acoustic guitars. It is pure and simple – and effective.
Pure & Simple