Allison Moorer is one of the finest singers and songwriters working in Nashville today, a claim easily supported by her powerful new album Miss Fortune. Both her lush, groove-goosed arrangements and her husky, humid vocals (she reminds some folks of what Cher would've sounded like had the diva grown up in Alabama and taken singing seriously) mark Moorer as a devoted and accomplished proponent of the sort of country-soul once practiced by Sammi Smith and Dusty Springfield. Indeed, her "Ruby Jewel Was Here," a rambling Southern gothic about a young rape victim, is close kin to the likes of Bobbie Gentry's "Fancy" and Tanya Tucker's "Delta Dawn." On "Hey, Jezebel," backed by a ragged-but-right gospel chorus, she sets out to split the lyrical difference between Dolly Parton's anxious "Jolene" and Loretta Lynn's agitated "Fist City." Beyond influence, however, Moorer is simply a stunning singer -- intimate, haunting, soulful and not to be missed.