“I had been shielded from tragedy for a long time,” country songstress Elizabeth Cook told The Wall Street Journal. “And then I got repeated doses in a short amount of time. It changes a person.” Cook’s luckless bout involved multiple deaths, divorce and a fire at her family’s house. It’s no wonder, then, that her new album, Exodus of Venus, comes laced with dark and defiant tones, from a kick drum stomping its way through the title track to no-nonsense guitar licks peppering the collection. Even Cook’s slow numbers sound as troubled as they are calm, though she balances it out with occasional pep — most notably on the chorus of “Straightjacket Love,” which she sings with Patty Loveless. Derek Hoke opens for the seasoned performer at The Altamont Theatre on Saturday, Aug. 13, at 8 p.m. $15/$18 ($25 VIP). thealtamonttheatre.com. Photo by Jim McGuire
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