West

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Lucinda’s eighth album is suffused with loss, its songs inspired mostly by the death of her mother and the ending of a tumultuous relationship. She, her band and producer Hal Willner often seem to be conjuring that pain so they can purge it properly on West, and often they succeed. But if West stands among Lucinda’s most intense works, it might also be her most inconsistent. If an up-and- coming singer/songwriter let loose a couplet like You don’t even have a clue / All you did was make me blue (“Come On”), she’d be unfavorably compared to more careful craftspeople—like, say, Lucinda Williams.

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