November 17, 2014 |
Lucinda Williams is matchless in her ability to put elusive emotions into words. In "Changed the Locks," which showed up near the end of her two-hour set at the Scottish Rite Auditorium in Collingswood on Saturday night, she turned the bad-blood end of a relationship into a creation myth; after locking her ex out in the cold, the song's protagonist moves train tracks and renames towns to hide her path, simultaneously exulting in her own power and admitting...
January 21, 2013
Pop Various Artists West of Memphis: Voices of Justice (Legacy **1/2) This collection is inspired by the trials of Damien Echols, Jesse Misskelley Jr., and Jason Baldwin, the Arkansas men known as the West Memphis 3. They were freed in 2011 after spending more than 18 years in prison on murder charges - in a case in which their love of heavy metal music was used as evidence against them. The 15-track CD accompanies Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh's West of Memphis , the fourth documentary made in protest against the unjust treatment of the three.
August 18, 2012
Film New this week: Sparkle *** This remake, which shifts the action from 1950s Harlem to 1960s Detroit, is notable for many reasons, chief among them that it marks the last movie appearance of Whitney Houston. She plays Emma, the strict single mother of three daughters who make a splash as a Supremes-like trio. If you're like me, you'll lose it when Houston takes uneasy flight with "His Eye Is on the Sparrow. " Directed by Salim Akil (maker of the sprightly Jumping the Broom )
May 16, 2012 |
He looks as studly, dewy-fresh and baby-faced as the day he modeled his sparking-white briefs in 1983's Risky Business. It's hard to believe that Tom Cruise, who turns 50 in July, has never had a nip, tuck, lift or lipo in his life. "I haven't, and I never would," Tom tells Playboy on the set of his next sci-fi blockbuster, Oblivion. Of wifey Katie Holmes, he says: "Everything she does, she does with this beautiful creativity," says Tom. "She's funny and charming, and when she walks into the room, I just feel better.
April 20, 2012 |
MUSIC Lady of Mystery Matching her haunted, tremulous voice to darkly poetic, dramatic songs of the country-rock persuasion, Megan Reilly casts an enchanting spell. There's some sonic kinship to Lucinda Williams and Emmylou Harris, though Reilly seems more forceful and spirit-shaking. It's an impression enhanced on her new album ("The Well") by the rocking/tremulous guitarists James Mastro and Lenny Kaye and, in her mellower mode, by a fingerpicking/singing John Wesley Harding, whom Reilly's opening for Friday night.
October 4, 2011 |
WE'RE GOING to the country, grooving on jazz, bringing home the folk and buzz-bombing Athens, Ga., in this week's new releases roundup. COUNTY CAPERS: 85-years-young Tony Bennett has just scored his first-ever No. 1 Billboard album with "Duets II. " Now wouldn't it be swell if outlaw country icon Merle Haggard could enjoy a similar tribute/payday with his new set, "Working In Tennessee" (Vanguard, B+) ? The 74-year-old lung-cancer survivor sounds in growly good voice and keeps the tempo lively, with lotsa swinging country-jazz licks and even a side trip into frothy Caribbean waters on the Jimmy Buffet-styled "Down on the Houseboat.
June 29, 2003 |
About a year ago, Karen Gross left her boyfriend's house, unsettled about the relationship, afraid she would be hurt if she allowed herself to fall in love. On the way home, she stopped in a parking lot, grabbed some notepaper and started writing. "Want to see the pages?" she said, rummaging through the piano bench at her family home. "I keep everything like a pack rat. " The neatly handwritten words connected by squiggles and arrows came together as "Break Up With Me, Baby," the third track on her debut CD, Navigating, which was released this month.
September 10, 2001 |
On Friday at the Electric Factory, Lucinda Williams was a blue angel in a black cowboy hat, a Southern gothic storyteller with a lonely night's worth of songs and a voice full of hurt. The Louisiana native hit the road with a trio of tunes from her 1998 breakthrough Car Wheels on a Gravel Road, and she didn't pull up until "Broken Butterflies," from this year's sultry Essence, more than two hours and two lengthy encores later. Williams' great gift is for gathering familiar rock, folk, blues and country materials to construct sturdy songs that use lean language and a scuffed-up seraph's voice to illuminate her fans' emotional lives.
September 6, 2001 |
While teen queens rule MTV, Rolling Stone and the airwaves, PJ Harvey and Lucinda Williams hold court on their own. Lucinda Williams (8:30 tomorrow night at the Electric Factory, 7th and Willow streets, 215-627-1332, $25 in advance, $28 day of show) laments lonely girls in rhinestones and distant friends in a voice that embodies both strength and fragility on her latest release, "Essence" (Lost Highway). PJ Harvey (8:30 p.m. Saturday at the Electric Factory, $27.50) gets better with time, particularly when she revisits and revises older material in performances.
July 5, 1998 |
Nothing comes easy for Lucinda Williams. The Nashville singer-songwriter and drama queen so skilled at turning her troubles into soul-wrenching art has had a rough couple of days. First, her flight to Philadelphia ran into turbulence - the kind that has you thinking about forgiveness and making amends, she says - and had to be routed to Baltimore. After arriving better-late-than-never to her sold-out show at the Theatre of Living Arts, she delivered a tour de force performance on two hours' sleep, and displayed complete command of the Southern roots-music idioms she holds dear.