Blessed - Lost Highway
FILTER Grade: 72%
By Jonathan Falcone on March 11, 2011
Lucinda Williams has a Grammy-winning career and a voice that crackles like late nights and alcohol. And Blessed takes us firmly down that expected country-rock highway—foot pressed nicely on the pedal, no bends in the road. This doesn’t make for the most tenacious album, but it’s peppered with flashes of strength and vulnerability. “Buttercup” is a whiskey-soaked lullaby with swirling organs powering under accomplished chops and a feel-good tempo. Similarly, “Seeing Black” has Elvis Costello rip through a guitar solo and Williams once more stiletto herself through the smoke as the song ponders upon the precipice of death. The album is far more arresting when the tempo is low—her voice is supported with harmony and the instrumentation is given room to flow, as opposed to the kind of rock to go along with your bar tab. Blessed certainly isn’t a curse, but it doesn’t exactly leave you feeling a higher power, either.