Through the years, Lucinda Williams’ albums have gone from strength to strength. Her latest release, Blessed, is only an improvement on her existing body of work. Darkness and light, acoustic and electric, quiet and energetic, good and evil all find their place in this world she builds. Williams feels no need to articulate every word of her songs, instead keeping tiny imperfections that keep her grounded as a real, genuine artist rather than a victim of autotune.
“Seeing Black” stands out as a Southern rock piece nestled in the midst of acoustic works, complete with a sprawling guitar solo for an ending that makes you sit up and take note. Just because some of her songs have gotten quieter doesn’t mean she kicks any less ass than before. “Soldier’s Song” is a poignant look at what it means to be a soldier reluctantly fighting in and subsequently dying during a war, with the storyline’s harsh ending amplified by a belated, subdued instrumental period. “Convince Me” has the classic sound of commercial blues that hit the airwaves in the 1990’s.
Blessed is a triumph of balance, a glimpse of the modern world through the camera of a woman who’s seen a lot and continues to look around for more.