40 Best Country and Americana Albums of 2017

Kip Moore flipped off the industry, Willie Nelson taunted mortality, and Margo Price questioned the American dream

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Angaleena Presley, 'Wrangled'
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10. Angaleena Presley, 'Wrangled'

"I don't want to be an outlaw, I don't want to be a renegade," sings Angaleena Presley on her song "Outlaw." It's one of several bitter pills the Kentucky native has to swallow on her second album Wrangled, as she grapples with the boxes into which she's been placed and the opportunities she's missed. On "Dreams Don't Come True," she reckons with the reality that success doesn't look or feel anything like she imagined, with musical flourishes that mirror a spiraling descent into depression. She spoofs radio country's fixation on jeans, trucks and dirt roads in the raging "Country," enlisting Southern rapper Yelawolf for a few fiery bars. Whether calling out a "spoiled-rotten daddy's girl" for not supporting other women in "Bless My Heart" or raining biblical justice on an abusive preacher, Presley proves she's way more than an outlaw – she's one of most fearless songwriters working in country music. J.F.

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