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Lucinda Williams – Good Souls Better Angels

April 30, 2020

Damn!  Lucinda is pissed, but not without hope. This is an artistic reaction about the devil in our midst. A devil who has leveraged organized crime, political corruption and racism – as Lu says in  “A Man Without A Soul:”

You’re a man without shame

Without dignity and grace

No way to save face

You’re a man without a soul

The album was recorded at long time Williams’ collaborator Ray Kennedy’s vintage-equipped studio. According to Williams website, she and

“…her longtime band – guitarist Stuart Mathis, bassist David Sutton, and drummer Butch Norton – cut most of the songs in two or three takes, with the rhythm section’s rock-solid pulse and Mathis’ versatile sonic attacks backing Williams’ distinctive passion-drenched vocals.”

Musically this album rocks. It is bluesy, swampy, rootsy and at times is out right hard rock. There are raw and gentle moments. The production and arrangements are absolutely perfect.

The band is fantastic and Stuart Mathis guitar playing is otherworldly. His scorching licks are the perfect foil to Lucinda’s drawl/growl.

Lyrically Williams volleys between poetry and slogans. The songs have anger and sadness, but they also have compassion and hope.

Good Souls And Better Angels is good therapy in these troubled times. In an NPR interview Williams says:

I was going to say earlier when we were talking about “Not a good time to put an album out”: Ironically enough, [for] this particular album, this is probably the perfect time for it to come out.

This is a perfect time for the album to come out. In a time when:

Liars are venerated

Losers, congratulated

Cheaters, celebrated

Please compensate it

Vultures satiated

Murders, exonerated

Guilty, vindicated

Innocent, incarcerated

Perfect indeed.


From → Music Reviews

One Comment
  1. I heard the opening cut a while ago. That and yur take will have me listening to the whole thing.
    “Bluesy, swampy, rootsy” Yeah.

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