Kate Miller-Heidke 

Curiouser

Australian singer-songwriter Kate Miller-Heidke is a kooky character. She's not afraid to play around with her classically trained voice, whether she's growling, hiccupping and burbling up into a flirty falsetto over an infectious lounge beat on "God's Gift to Women," or mashing up the sinuous moan of a Britney Spears with the triumphant soprano of an ABBA chorus on "The One Thing I Know." Miller-Heidke is best when she's goofy, as on "Politics in Space," a song so silly and stagy it would be at home on a Pink Floyd album (were it not for the great line, "The '60s were 50 years ago, you know. Get over it!")

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But that nutty persona is hard to sustain for an entire album, and the balance of Curiouser, the album that might bring her stateside fame, is done in a sweet and breathy style that is appealing but a little bland. "The Last Day On Earth" has already paved the way with a debut on the Aussie soap "Neighbors," and I'll admit it's a solid ballad, but I prefer the ethereal "Our Song," which Miller-Heidke somehow renders too pretty to collapse under the weight of sappy sentiments.

Kate Miller-Heidke opens for Ben Folds at the Wilma Theatre Wednesday, Oct. 21, at 7:30 PM. $29.50 plus fees.

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