Lucinda Williams

It's fitting that Lucinda Williams' 1988 LP was initially released by England's Rough Trade, home to the Smiths and the Raincoats – it deserves as much credit as any album for spearheading the so-called Americana movement, country's post-punk equivalent. Finally back in print, every song burns hot as ever: the indie jangle-twang of "Passionate Kisses" (which won a Country Song of the Year Grammy via Mary Chapin Carpenter's inferior version), the incandescent sexiness of "Like a Rose," and "The Night's Too Long," which could nearly be an outtake from Bruce Springsteen's Nebraska. The live bonus disc features non-LP tracks (including an early version of "Something About What Happens When We Talk"), a crack band with guitarist Gurf Morlix and a riveting singer, fully formed.

From The Archives Issue 1200: January 16, 2014