Sweet Jones, Home Vol: 1 (Independent)

Couples Americana? Sure, why not? The husband-and-wife team of the DeOrazios, Melissa (vocals and guitar) and Matthew (guitar and everything else), wrote and recorded this 5-song EP at home, imbued their folk-country hybrid with a warm and inviting glow, and stuck to the theme of the title, turning all five tracks—even the jaunty closing instrumental rag “Homeward Bound”—into a brief song cycle about finding one’s way back to one’s strength. The gentle nature of their traditionalism only helps to put an even softer focus on these intimate snapshots. You might very well feel like staying for dinner.

Nope, none of that Richard and Linda Thompson domestic hell here: Though lyrically Sweet Jones’ songs describe a long-term relationship on the skids, Melissa’s nurturing take on them seems to make reconciliation a given, almost a rustic take on Homer’s Odyssey, minus the carnage but with happy ending intact (“Welcome Home”). Whether or not you’d rather watch a musical couple do the Fleetwood Mac thing… well, that’d be on you. The DeOrazios don’t seem boring, just comfortable.