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Brandi Carlile is one of those alt-country songstresses whose music doesn't smack of the coy vulnerability found in other musicians of her ilk. Instead, she persuasively delivers the musical missives of an old soul battered by a harsh world, yet determined to weather the storm. With an incredibly fluid vocality that rolls between a soft coo and a lamenting howl reminiscent of Roy Orbison, Carlile's voice might best be described in car jargon as highly responsive.