An initial listen to even just one verse of Nancy Laberge's compositions evokes hope. Hope that songs like "I Know You’re Gone" or "Real Cold Fall" - which inhabit this side of the mountain ridge separating the valley of shaded indie music bliss from the open pastures of mainstream country radio play - will make it to the other side and improve its landscape. When a song such as "Like a Train" makes it over that ridge, it is no accident. Laberge honed her craft while living Nashville and Los Angeles under the terms of a publishing deal and a songwriting contract. These journeys, combined with five years performing and releasing music with trio Mississippi Steamboat, plus stints in the trios No Strings Attached and Backyard Betties (where Laberge is still a band member), inform the passion and veracity behind her music. Specializing in trouble and love, daylight and dark, Laberge creates pretty but never cloying songs that feature simple instrumentation and profound wordplay, even though most of her song titles and lyrics don't stray far from single-syllable territory.