Howling Trains and Barking DogsCINDY BULLENS

Howling Trains and Barking Dogs

It’s fitting that 30 years after her solo bow with “Survivor,” Cindy Bullens remains as spirited as ever. It hasn’t been easy; after contributing to the Grease soundtrack and singing with Elton John, family obligations curtailed a promising career. A move to Nashville in 1990 boosted her fortunes, offering opportunities to write with noted vets Radney Foster, Bill Lloyd, Matraca Berg and Wendy Waldman, among many others. Some of those names return the favor here, resulting in a set of songs as distinctive as the personalities involved. Bullens’ seamless transition from pop to country finds material like “Love Gone Good,” “Good at Being Gone” and “Labor of Love” surveying a wide rootsy terrain. From back-porch ballads to wailing, rousing honky-tonk, Bullens not only survives, she thrives.

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