Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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***

LUCINDA WILLIAMS
Live at the Fillmore
Lost Highway

In a perplexing move, alt-country ace reprises her latest album on live double CD

There's no point questioning Lucinda Williams's talent, or her perfectionism. Of course her first live album sounds dandy. There isn't a bad song or performance on it. Unfortunately, there isn't a new song or performance on it either. Every one of its 22 tracks appears in pretty much the same form on one of her painstaking studio albums--including, in an apparent world record, 11 of the 13 titles on 2003's mildly underrated World Without Tears. We don't appreciate her new songs, huh? Well, she'll show us--she'll release them again two years later. Sure, they have a little more oomph this time. But why the devotees who adore everything she does would need more proof that she's an effective bandleader is something her record label would surely like to know.

Blender, June 2005