On her chatty live solo recordings, Danielle Howle has personality to burn. Yet on "Do a Two Sable," a studio album Howle recorded with the roots-rock backing band she calls the Tantrums, the singer-songwriter seems less distinctive. When she sings, "I'm just a host/ For the notes/ That's all I'll ever be," the modesty doesn't seem entirely misplaced.
If Howle is feeling humble, perhaps it's because romantic disappointment has knocked the wind out of her. From the rocking "You Came a Knockin' " ("You came a knockin' at my door, yea you/ You make me feel so wrong") to the somber "Anything Can Get Into My Heart" ("I'm just a pillow soaking up the salt"), this album is mostly about love's aftermath. The countrified "If You Wanna Leave" sounds resigned, and the defiant "Where Were You" ("I don't have any more love to give you") is about as upbeat as she gets in this disc. Considering that the latter song is also one of the album's liveliest, perhaps "Do a Two Sable" would have benefited from fewer regrets and more tantrums. Appearing Friday at the Black Cat with the White and Love Uzi. To hear a free Sound Bite from Danielle Howle, call Post-Haste at 202/334-9000 and press 8102. (Prince William residents, call 690-4110.) CAPTION: Danielle Howle seems less distinctive in the studio than in a live performance.