If you have an ear for music with one foot in the pop world and the other deftly and gracefully dancing through everything from classical richness, rock drive, slight country lilts and even the more ambient and beguiling ends of the electronic world, then look no further.

Hard To Love, described as an anti-Valentine song (which shows you how far behind I am with the review pile), is all those things. If a word such as pop might seem to sell the song a little short, I will qualify that by saying that it is pop that is mature, sophisticated, and so well put together that we are probably going to need a better word, but pop is the closest label we have for now, so pop (with many qualifiers, addendum and notes hastily scribbled in the margins) it is.

The song has an inbuilt elegance; Kristen Rae Bowden’s vocals are the final layer of sophistication dropped over a piece that exudes delicacy and musical eloquence, atmospherics and grace.

One day, all pop music will strive for such standards. Well, we can but hope.

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