LUCINDA WILLIAMS - The last two albums (2007/08)
2007 - "West"
Though the arrangements stray from Lucinda Williams's motherlode blend of blues, country, and folk, West may well be her best album. It is easily her most musically adventurous, and often her most lyrically inspired. Williams's singing has never sounded better, from the aching tenderness of "Where Is My Love?" to the ravaged catharsis of "Unsuffer Me." New York producer Hal Willner, who has worked with artists such as Marianne Faithful and Lou Reed, enlists the support of eclectic progressives like guitarist Bill Frisell, keyboardist Bob Burger, and violinist Jenny Scheinman, along with harmonies from the Jayhawks' Gary Louris, to weave a subtly rich sonic tapestry. Much of the material was inspired by the death of Williams's beloved mother ("Mama You Sweet," "Fancy Funeral") and the bitter breakup of a relationship (the jagged-edged emasculation of "Come On," the repetitive incantation of "Wrap My Head Around That"), though "Are You Alright?," "Learning How to Live," and "Everything Has Changed" could reflect the aftermath of both. Other highlights include "Rescue," with a languid subtlety and ambient pulse reminiscent of Beth Orton, and the dreamy, wistful title track. Where Williams's music has long cut close to the bone, the best of West slices right through it. - amazon.com
TRACKS: 01. Are You Alright? 02. Mama You Sweet 03. Learning How To Live 04. Fancy Funeral 05. Unsuffer Me 06. Everything Has Changed 07. Come On 08. Where Is My Love? 09. Rescue 10. What If 11. Wrap My Head Around That 12. Words 13. West MULTIDOWNLOAD
2008 - "Little Honey"
Lucinda Williams does anguish so well it’s easy to forget that Happy Woman Blues is not just the title of her 1980 album, but also the way she thinks of herself. That identity comes across full force in Little Honey, the follow-up to 2007’s heavily brooding West, where her melancholy voice seemed to creak with sadness. Here, a full-throated Williams revels in the rejuvenation of her engagement to her manager/co-producer Tom Overby, over whom she’s positively giddy on "Real Love." Her newfound bliss opens the floodgates to a musical revival, as well, since Little Honey, her ninth studio album, ranks as one of her most diverse, ranging from pounding rock ‘n’ roll (the raw sex of the title track) to the Hank Williams-ish country blues of "Well, Well, Well," to "Knowing"'s ‘60s soul. But some of the finest writing appears on "Plan to Marry," as thoughtful a meditation on love as any time-honored sonnet. Just when Williams seems to have run the gamut, she pulls out a Stones-y (via Louisiana) cover of AC/DC’s "It’s a Long Way to the Top" as the punctuation mark. It all makes for a rollicking ride with one of roots-rock's most unpredictable and passionate artists. - amazon.com
TRACKS: 01. Real Love 02. Circles And X's 03. Tears Of Joy 04. Little Rock Star 05. Honey Bee 06. Well Well Well 07. If Wishes Were Horses 08. Jailhouse Tears 09. Knowing 10. Heaven Blues 11. Rarity 12. Plan To Marry 13. It's A Long Way To The Top MULTIDOWNLOAD
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