Lessons Learned

Lessons Learned

by Tracy Lawrence
     
 

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Give Tracy Lawrence credit: instead of softening up his sound as the hits piled up, he's headed for harder-edged territory. On LESSONS LEARNED, the stinging guitars and pounding drums set the tone right up front, on "The Holes That He Dug," a potently rendered bit of philosophy about withholding judgment until you've walked in another's shoes. This approach stays true… See more details below

Overview

Give Tracy Lawrence credit: instead of softening up his sound as the hits piled up, he's headed for harder-edged territory. On LESSONS LEARNED, the stinging guitars and pounding drums set the tone right up front, on "The Holes That He Dug," a potently rendered bit of philosophy about withholding judgment until you've walked in another's shoes. This approach stays true throughout a series of songs that have been there, done that, and give a word to the wise, apropos of the album's title track. On one of the occasions when things tone down, on "From the Inside Out," Lawrence surveys the internal wreckage of a man who never bothered to set aside his own agenda until his beloved took a hike. LESSONS LEARNED offers consistent surprises in its themes, and Lawrence's singing and instrumental support are powerfully in sync. An impressive contemporary country effort.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Stephen Thomas Erlewine
Given the three years separating it from its predecessor, it's a little disappointing that Lessons Learned isn't a little livelier, or at least a little different from his previous records. It's not. It's not bad, however. Lawrence sticks with the polished, modern-day honky tonk that made him a star, toning down the rough edges and adding gloss to the surface. That means the record heavily favors ballads, and even the peppier material is midtempo. The most exciting it gets is "Up All Night," a credible, mild-spirited rocker, graced by a moment of genius when the music stops and Lawrence sings "I Been Up, I Been Up, I Been Up" in mesmerizing cadence. In other words, it's a well-crafted, adult album. How that plays is a matter of taste. Strictly speaking, this isn't really a straight-up country record, but it's hardly the country-pop of Shania Twain either. It falls between the two extremes, borrowing the form of hardcore country, but the sound and attitude of country-pop. This isn't out of character for Lawrence, but it's a little surprising just how measured Lessons Learned is. It's certainly pleasant, yet it tends to fade into the background. It doesn't help that the material is, by and large, not particularly distinguished. A few tunes jump out, and there's nothing bad here, but there's nothing particularly noteworthy. It's the kind of record only a veteran could produce: accomplished, professional, and modestly -- yet only mildly -- entertaining.

Product Details

Release Date:
02/01/2000
Label:
Atlantic
UPC:
0075678326943
catalogNumber:
83269

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