7:30 p.m. Tuesday, July 7, at McGonigel's Mucky Duck, 2425 Norfolk, 713-528-5999 or www.mcgonigels.com.
If you aren't familiar with Spring native Betty Soo but love good folksy roots music à la Patty Griffin or Julie Miller, chances are you'll know her soon enough. Soo's new Gurf Morlix-produced Heat Sin Water Skin is a solid, satisfying effort in every way, from her clever and poignant lyrics to the no-frills approach that fits her voice and words so well. Soo doesn't pull many punches or try to fool herself what boy-girl is all about: "Am I just another lover to you, another piece of skin you could get close to?" Track after track, she writes thoughtfully without a hint of saccharine, and her voice fits her sentiments perfectly. It's easy to think "Whisper My Name" is a Patty Griffin song, and that's not hyperbole. Just as he does on his own albums when he works with Griffin, Morlix keeps the music gritty and hard, but never takes the spotlight off Soo and her songcraft. And no musician or producer should ever distract from such a surgically precise lyric as "This ain't no love tale like Johnny and June / This ain't ever after, the fire died too soon." Yeah, Betty Soo is going to do Houston proud.