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Lucinda Williams (from the album Stories from a Rock N Roll Heart available on Highway 20 Records) (by Lee Zimmerman)
Lucinda Williams’ music has always been informed as much by attitude as it is through aptitude. Her new album, Stories from a Rock N Roll Heart, is no different, and as the title implies, it finds her as driven and determined as ever. That’s significant given the health issues that have plagued her in recent years. Fortunately, though, she shows the resolve and resilience needed to ensure her forthright approach remains firmly at the fore.
As always, Lucinda Williams doesn’t hold back when it comes to expressing her observations and her emotions without regard for the opinions of others. Although the title track sums up that sentiment, her wayward trajectory suggests she’s not about to make any compromise. Opening track “Let’s Get the Band Back Together” and the final coda, “I’m Not Gonna Fade Away”, make it clear that she’s undeterred as far as paving her path forward, but certain songs — the rousing “This Is Not My Town” in particular — also suggest she’s far from oblivious of the lies, deceit, and division thrust on the world by disingenuous politicians and all those out to serve their own interests. It’s an unfortunate state of affairs, but Williams clearly has the gumption to assert herself accordingly and not be dissuaded or denied.
That’s not to say Williams’ insurgent attitude consistently takes full command. A series of sad, lonely and low-cast tunes — “Hum’s Liquor”, “Where the Song Will Find Me”, “Jukebox”, and “Last Call for the Truth” -- may seem tied to nostalgia, but at the same time, her aching emotion takes center stage. “Stolen Moments” paints a vivid picture of an empty afternoon spent cruising L.A.’s endless highways — think Tom Petty’s “Free Fallin’” in terms of the imagery it offers — but she’s mostly preoccupied not with navigation, but rather with a lover whose memory remains well within her reach.
Nevertheless, it’s the feelings of isolation and divide that dominate much of the material, suggesting that she’s still struggling to find equilibrium in a world where the odds are against her.
Nevertheless, after two albums dedicated to the music of Tom Petty and Bob Dylan, Stories from a Rock N Roll Heart makes it convincingly clear Lucinda Williams has regained her muse and her desire to pursue her own passions. Call it a comeback, but Stories from a Rock N Roll Heart could not have come from any source other than her own. (by Lee Zimmerman)
Listen and buy the music of Lucinda Williams from AMAZON
Please go to the Lucinda Williams website for more purchase and artist information
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