Lucinda Williams - Blessed
Lucinda Williams’ diverse musical nature is her second-greatest strength, next to her voice. Her ability to shift seamlessly between country, folk, rock and the blues has defined her musical career. That being said, as diverse as her musical style is, after time it has a way of seeming one track. As is the case with many prolific artists, Williams seems content to stay in her safety net. This doesn’t make her tenth studio release, Blessed, bad. But it does make it, at times, somewhat uninteresting.
Blessed plays host to all of the things you would expect from Williams. The shifts in genre are present, although the record does seem to have a bit more continuity than some of its predecessors in that regard. And of course her vocals are as poignant as ever. The female equivalent to a Bob Dylan or a Tallest Man on Earth, her raspy voice may turn away some, but for most, it’s masterful.
Her ability to deliver her vocals with pure emotion also stands out. ‘Buttercup,’ her trademark kiss off song for this record, is the rocker, while ‘Seeing Black’ also stands out. On the opposite side of the spectrum, ‘Born To Be Loved’ and the instrumentally stripped down ‘Soldier’s Song’ exemplify her slow-paced side. All told, it’s ‘Copenhagen’ that proves to be her best performance. Filling the gaps between these tracks though, there are a few that fail to really draw the listener in, making Blessed a bit of a mixed bag.
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