Influenced by Aretha Franklin and the MC5, the Heartless Bastards deliver hard-edged blues-rock. Singer and multi-instrumentalist Erika Wennerstrom has a talent comparable to that of Tracy Chapman and Edie Brickell. And while the Cincinnati trio's debut exuded more of this bluesy vibe, its latest, All This Time
, highlights the group's growing versatility. Sure, "I Swallowed a Dragonfly" grooves like Bo Diddley, but several tracks feel unabashedly reminiscent of '90s rock -- especially the subtle piano touches of "Into the Open" and the wild guitars bursting forth from "No Pointing Arrows."