Car Wheels On A Gravel Road (Reissue)

It took Lucinda Williams six years and three producers to make her best album, an amazing record that sounds like it was casually banged out in a particularly creative weekend. It's steeped in Southern life, from song titles like "Lake Charles" to the country accents of the music to the accumulation of small details that make Williams' songs feel as vivid as diary entries. Although there must be plenty of outtakes and alternate versions from those six years of sessions, you won't find them here; this two-disc edition of the 1998 release is garnished with three bonus tracks almost as good as the rest of the record (two previously unreleased, one from the Horse Whisperer soundtrack) and a great live concert recorded in Philadelphia that includes most of the songs from Car Wheels, just in a different order.

From The Archives Issue 345: June 11, 1981