Christine Santelli: Any Better Time (Vizztone 388010:41:35) *** 1/2
On her seventh Album, this New Yorker successfully expands her personal vision of the blues with several strains of country music, including Cajun. The grain in Santelli's voice lends her singing an edge of earnestness that fits the appealing tunes she wrote about giving in to despair ("Down in the Valley") and juping off the "fast track" (Lily's Song"). Not a blustery guitarist herself, Santelli calls on Popa Chubby to incinerate the blues-rock breakout "Ode to Bill." Her ambitious "For You" matches the song character's emotional health to surprise giddy cirucus music.