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Unglamorous (Standard Version)
 
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Unglamorous (Standard Version)

8 Oct 2007 | Format: MP3

7.99 (VAT included if applicable)
Also available in CD Format
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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 19 Jun 2007
  • Release Date: 19 Jun 2007
  • Label: Warner Bros.
  • Copyright: 2007 Warner Bros. Records Inc. for the U.S. and WEA International Inc. for the world outside the U.S.
  • Record Company Required Metadata: Music file metadata contains unique purchase identifier. Learn more.
  • Total Length: 46:49
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B001F3KHGS
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 59,310 in MP3 Albums (See Top 100 in MP3 Albums)

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Simon Todd on 11 April 2008
Format: Audio CD
Lori McKenna's 5th album is arguably her best yet. The songs are very strong, both from a lyrical and melodic perspective. McKenna's voice is passionate, firey and sassy, whilst still touching on pain, loss and heartache when necessary.
Don't let the Nashville connections put you off if you're not a big country fan, this is an alternative country album containing some very strong songs sung with true feeling, and one that will not be out of place in the collection of any lover of the songwriting craft.
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By shanj66 on 26 Feb 2012
Format: Audio CD
I had never heard of Lori McKenna until I read an article by a journalist in the FT.

What struck me was his unashamed adoration of the artist and his passionate description of her music and how it touched him. See [...]

It was an interesting article and I was curious to see what all the fuss was about. On a whim I checked her out on Spotify and I have to say, I was not disappointed. In fact i was blown away and I bought Unglamorous which arrived in a couple of days. Two days after that I was a convert and now I now have all of her albums. Lorraine is awesome too if you have not got that.

Brilliant.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 37 reviews
19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
Old meets new 16 Aug 2007
By J. M. McGregory - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Old meets new. Lori still has the same sound she has always had, but it's been brought a little more mainstream on this CD. AND IT WORKS!

I came across Lori before her "Faith Hill" days. Not sure how I came across her...but loved her voice, her lyrics.

But this....this is what she was meant to be. She has not sold out. She has merged the old with the new. THIS is the way her songs were meant to be heard. The incredible voice. The touching lyrics. With a production befitting them.

The CD has a very simple production that enhances but does not overpower her lyrics and incredible voice. The production does make some of her earlier stuff seem "demo'ish" but...hey, with titles like "The Kitchen Tapes," that was the whole idea.

This CD is a wonderful progression for Lori. And....we benefit. This CD is a "must have."

Folk meets country. Old meets new. Get it!
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
Great Talent, New "country" schlock production.. 10 Sep 2007
By Xagan - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Sadly for her old fans, Lori seems willing to accept the modern "country" format sound, it takes to get radio airplay and play the bigger concert halls these days. Pity. Her material is as good as ever.

That being said, the same tired wanna be rock'n roll backbeat, is applied to virtually every song. Add the layered guitars, including at least two layers of distorted guitars and voila the standard new/modern country sound does it's best to submerge her gifts. Somehow they still manage to make it through the schlock. BUT IT IS ONLY INSPITE OF THE HACK PRODUCTION, NOT BECAUSE OF IT. I for one, hope her next release returns to the more minimal and real sound of her past recordings.

I liked the added production used on Bittertown. It fit her music, rather than forcing her to fit into it's formualaic sound as this album does.

Worst case scenario, she gets the attention she deserves and produces more records that sound like this one.

Compare her original Stealing Kisses to the Faith Hill version. If you prefer the Hill version, you should love this album. I do not.
7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Gotta Have It 21 Aug 2007
By Whimc - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
I was introduced to Lori's work about a year ago through a friend who is a big fan and has enjoyed her sold out performances in the Boston area. I was immediately drawn into her songs, her songs are stories of life. The good, the bad and the ugly Lori makes them all beautiful works of musical art. I have anxiously awaited her new album release and was not disappointed. Lori is the real deal and she is poised to be a superstar.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
the poet laureate of the minivan set -- and then some 28 Jan 2008
By Jesse Kornbluth - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
There are few stages more glamorous than the Allen Room of the Time Warner Center, with musicians performing in front of a floor-to-ceiling, 50-by-90-foot window wall. And on a chilly January night, with a full moon acting as a background light, it's impossible not to feel monumentally alive as you wait for a show to start here --- open to whatever the performer can bring you, eager to process that gift.

But what gift do I expect from Lori McKenna? I was young when I fled the suburbs, and I still shudder at the memory; the few songs of McKenna's that I've heard celebrate domestic life in `burbs like Stoughton, Massachusetts, where she grew up and still lives. My marital history is checkered; she has five kids with her husband of 19 years. But the sinking feeling doesn't really hit me until McKenna comes out in a nice-girl party dress, sensible grey patent heels and a small cross --- it's what she wore the first time she played the Grand Old Opry, but she could easily wear again if she chaperoned on prom night.

Why was I there? Because Lori McKenna, who didn't sing in public until she was 27, got hit with the lucky stick. Faith Hill put three of her songs on a CD, and then Tim McGraw, Faith's husband, produced Lori's new CD, "Unglamorous," for a big label with real money for promotion. And a friend heard her --- her fifth CD, that is --- and fell in love with it, and got tickets, and couldn't go, which is how I found myself, a few rows from the stage, looking more or less directly in Lori McKenna's eyes.

The questions of the evening:

Is Lori McKenna as good as her devotees --- she's got them, and they're fervent; just look at the comments on her web site or on Amazon.com --- say she is? If so, did she really get lucky when Nashville smiled on her? Or will Nashville change her into just another chick voice lost in a sea of over-production, her songs indistinguishable from [fill in the blank] and her colorful biography as her biggest calling card?

The show started with songs about a blue-collar, heartbeat-of-America lover and a guy with a drinking problem ("I never touch the stuff/But honey I'll tell you what/You can't count the ways it touches me"). In another she gave her man "written permission" to move on. And she thanked the Lord that her husband takes "the right road home" at night. These songs were better written than the slicker-than-snail-snot country made in most Nashville studios; I was on her side.

I started listening more intently when she sang a beautiful line about blessing the "dull sweetness in this life of ours." And I was stunned by a song about her lover's "next lover", who lives a few doors down and wants some not-so-innocent coffee. Very quickly, very efficiently, that song got to...

I hope she reminds you nothing of me
And as crazy, as crazy as it sounds
I hope she's beautiful.

It was then that she started talking about her mother, and the song she had written about her death --- Lori, the youngest of six kids, was just six when her mother died. I don't know how she got through that song, with its wish to see her mother on the most ordinary of days, doing the most ordinary things; it wasn't just the women who were weeping in their hands.

She saved her triumphant signature song for the end. The band was amped for this one, and they delivered a burst of power country that thundered through the room as McKenna sang:

Frozen dinner, jelly glass of wine --- tastes just fine
Two breadwinners, five kids in short time --- with eyes just like mine

How wonderful: crowded dinners at the kitchen table
How beautiful: one TV set, no cable
No frills, no fuss, perfectly us
Unglamorous

And yeah, you can say it was brilliant packaging, theme music for an Oprah-ready singer who hasn't hesitated to put her family in her videos. And you can say her voice is pleasant but not remarkable. But then you come to her writing, and its intimacy and specificity, and you're stopped cold --- however much you may want to peg her as the poet laureate of the minivan set, she's much, much deeper than that.

More and more, I've been thinking, it's the little things. Walking the kid to school, watching a late night movie with the wife, a kind word from a friend I didn't know I had. Moments so nothing you don't especially notice them --- in my revisionist thinking, they're the glory. Pay attention to them, really live them, and you're more likely to do the right thing when the doctor tells you it's cancer or the job goes away or whatever. Maybe.

That's the life that McKenna writes about, and, more, the feelings underneath; writing mostly at her kitchen table, she's had remarkable access to pain. But she's not Sylvia Plath with a guitar. She's also funny and sassy, the woman you can count on to have a smart remark at the PTA meeting and total knowledge of who's cheating on whom down the block --- but instead of losing that material to her best friend on the cell phone, she uses it in the service of music that's catnip to women with lives very much like hers.

There are those who don't like "Unglamorous" because Tim McGraw had a hand in it. I understand that way of thinking. Abstractly, I vote with it. But let's try some empathy: if you had five kids and Tim McGraw asked you, ever so nicely, if he could make you rich and famous, you might not be so quick to show him the door.

My bet: Lori McKenna's too smart to get caught up in the machinery of official Nashville. And there's nothing "wrong" with "Unglamorous" that most civilian ears will notice. It's just that if you really want to know why Lori McKenna is worth the listen --- why she could be the one who writes the songs that come from marrow and last forever --- you really ought to go back, to the CDs she made when she was hauling kids around in the Ford and playing small gigs and sitting at the kitchen table, at odd hours, making modest domestic magic.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Mixed Feelings 1 Aug 2008
By James Carragher - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
Lori McKenna's mixed feelings in her often very strong writing are about men, marriage, and relationships. My mixed feelings about this CD concern whether a polished Nashville sound produced by Tim McGraw is the right showcase for those songs. In the end, I think not for the bright but predictable arrangements more often undercut instead of enhance the emotions of McKenna's writings. Maybe being discovered by country superstars and having your first major label release is a mixed blessing. Still, there are plenty of keepers here including the title track and its unabashed celebration of love on a tight budget; Your Next Lover; the terrific Drinkin' Problem; and Confetti. Her shout out in the liner notes to Mary Gauthier makes me want to check out her earlier work too.
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