Angela Desveaux's debut album, Wandering Eyes, was the work of an artist so accomplished that it was difficult to imagine she'd never made a record before. By comparison, her second disc, recorded with the help of her new backing band the Mighty Ship, doesn't pack quite the same wallop as the first set, if only because as a performer she's as precociously gifted as she was on her first sessions but not dramatically more so, though the honey-sweet flow of her Emmylou Harris-meets-Lucinda Williams delivery still enchants. But Angela Desveaux & the Mighty Ship does reveal that in the two years between albums she's improved as a songwriter; the melodies on this album are graceful and emphatic while fitting her voice like a glove, and her songs about the peaks and valleys of love have a bit more experience and weight behind them, which serves them well. Desveaux also has a fine band collaborating with her; guitarist Mike Feuerstack, bassist Eric Digras, and drummer Gilles Castilloux are all solid musicians, and collectively their grasp of nuance and dynamics is a thing of beauty to behold, gently commanding a remarkable degree of emotional force. While Brian Paulson was brought in to produce Desveaux's debut, here she and her bandmates ran the sessions in tandem with Dave Draves, and they've done an impressive job, capturing the ambience of a live performance while allowing every nook and cranny to be heard and carry its share of the weight. This is a splendid recording of ten fine songs from an artist poised to become one of the leading singer/songwriters of the day, and if it lacks the sense of surprise that accompanied her first effort, Angela Desveaux & the Mighty Ship is on repeat listenings an even more satisfying work.