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Calling Over Time begins, “I sing the blues most every night, and I wait for the one I lost,” and ends with “Albany Blues,” where the singer subtly mentions that she might be the one to bail out if things don’t get better. In similar manner, Edith Frost drops hints about what she’s updating; in a bluesy way, she’s fashioning something divine out of the raw material of sorrow, betrayal, and confusion. While it features musicians well-known for their experimentalism and minimal aesthetics—Chicagoans Jim O’Rourke and David Grubbs and High Llama Sean O’Hagan—Calling is indelibly Frost’s album: She’s more interested in writing tender and chilling songs than crafting gurgling electronica. Grubbs, O’Rourke, & Co. aptly set those songs against a restrained, often sparse, sometimes country-tinged (“Pony Song”) backdrop of stripped-down Chicago style. Frost’s voice haunts at times, her words falling lazily and disconnectedly, a bit like those of Opal’s Kendra Smith, but elsewhere she’s self-effacingly upbeat (“Too Happy” and “Give Up Your Love”). “Temporary Loan,” a breathtaking downer of an opener, sets the tone for the album: An account of the bitter, lonely disappointment of finding that one was “just a harbor, a temporary love” unfolds beneath a simple guitar strum. “Follow” has a barely discernible jazz feel, which lends itself well to the song’s carnal scene, while “Denied” grows abstract and mantralike. Unfortunately, “Albany Blues” ends the record weakly. It’s square and uptight, its art-folky airs trying desperately to get rootsy. Which is odd, because Frost seems to have already found a new country-blues spirit that isn’t slavishly devoted to hand-me-down chord progressions.—John Dugan