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Country - Released June 2, 2014 | RCA Records Label Nashville

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Platinum is a double-edged title. The first edge refers to Miranda Lambert's hair -- as she sings on the title track, "what doesn't kill you only makes you blonder" -- the second refers to her fame, a topic she returns to often throughout her fifth record. A star since her 2005 debut Kerosene -- it was released on the heels of her also-ran placing on 2003's Nashville Star, so she's never known a time outside of the spotlight -- her fame reached the stratosphere in the 2010s, after she married fellow country star Blake Shelton in 2011, not long after he became one of the judges on NBC's The Voice. This romance pushed Lambert into mainstream tabloids, a situation she addresses on "Priscilla," where she laments that "it's a difficult thing being queen of the king," an odd turn of phrase considering Miranda is by no means subservient to Blake. By most measures, she reigns supreme in 2010s' contemporary country in a way her husband does not: she's a songwriter, which he is not, she spends her spare time in the Pistol Annies and he spends his downtime on TV and she, far more than her husband, takes musical risks. Platinum is notable because Lambert tries to be everything to everyone here and damn near succeeds. There are times when she drifts too far toward crass crossover, but she doesn't run risks when she adopts a vocoder, which she does to great aplomb on "Smokin' and Drinkin'," a duet with Little Big Town that has all of their smoothness and none of their slickness. Lambert only sounds desperate when she's racing to keep up with Carrie Underwood on "Somethin' Bad" -- a song co-written by American Idol stalwart Chris DeStefano -- and perhaps on "Automatic," a paean to the past she feels too self-conscious about and doesn't have a melody to sell its nostalgia, either. Apart from these two cuts, Platinum doesn't take a wrong step, which is all the more remarkable because Lambert tries to have it both ways: she pulls out all the stops making gilded contemporary pop, but spends a significant section of the album playing songs the way they used to, covering Tom T. Hall's "All That's Left" with the Time Jumpers, offering a bluegrass ode to "Old Shit," and then concluding with a vaudeville shuffle "Gravity's a Bitch," a riotous admission that there's no denying the ravages of old age. Most of Lambert's co-writing comes on the concluding third of the record, where she collaborates with Ashley Monroe on "Holding on to You" and "Another Sunday in the South," while working with Brandy Clark on "Two Rings Shy," songs that reaffirm her taste for sharply crafted modern country, but Platinum is cannily constructed, opening with the most modern tunes ("Girls," a record that crawls when it seems like it would run, "Platinum," and the breakneck "Little Red Wagon") before settling into more pure country. Perhaps Platinum would've benefitted from a tighter construction, but its mess and lopsided sequencing wind up appealing: at its heart, this is a classic double-album where the misses enhance the home runs and, eventually, are endearing on their own terms. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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Country - Released November 18, 2016 | Vanner Records - RCA Records Label Nashville

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The divorce record is a country trope, and Miranda Lambert doubles down with this moving two-record set. But she earns her place in the canon by turning the cliché on its head. There is no blaming the no-good man who broke her heart — Lambert’s a long way from just a few years before, when she set fire to an ex’s home in the video for “Kerosene.” This time, it’s all about examining her own flaws and scars. Like many a Hank Williams fan before her, she drinks away the pain — “It’s been a while since I’ve been off the stuff,” Lambert sings on the reggae-groove lark “Ugly Lights” — but then slinks out of town in the middle of the night. Meanwhile, the backing vocals on “Highway Vagabond” and “Vice” sound like wind howling through an open car window. There are delightfully surprising twists along the route, such as “The Joshua Tree”-style guitars on “Runnin’ Just In Case” and the garage-band fuzz of “Pink Sunglasses,” which deceptively paints Lambert as a ditz who finds enlightenment in a cheap pair of shades. Still, there’s no mistaking her country heart on the Americana beauty “Good Ol’ Days” or the ballads “Tin Man” and “Well-Rested.” The show-stopper here is “Vice” with its vinyl-record hiss, woozy guitars and a dramatically descending chord structure. “I wear a town like a leather jacket / When the new wears off I don’t even pack it,” Lambert sighs. Is she running away or moving on? Either way, it’s smart to follow her. © Qobuz
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Country - Released September 24, 2009 | Columbia Nashville

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Revolution is Miranda Lambert's first record to be delivered to great expectations, a reflection of the excellence of her first two and her increasing crossover to a wider, rock-oriented audience. Revolution was certainly made with that audience in mind, running a whopping 15 tracks -- a standard length in rock albums, not country -- and pumped up with growling, grinding guitars and thunderous rhythms, all the better to escalate her image as a rowdy spitfire. The gambit pays off almost too well, not quite obscuring the tender, gentle moments that prevent Lambert from being easily pigeonholed but pushing her Crazy Ex-Girlfriend persona to the verge of parody. What goes too far are not the songs but the sound, the relentless onslaught of overdriven guitars meant to convey an attitude Miranda captures better with her snarl. Lambert still slips easily into a rebel rocker persona, sneering "Only Prettier" with delicious contempt, but here she winds up as more winning when she modulates her delivery, adding sly humor to Fred Eaglesmith's "Time to Get a Gun" or easing into the easy-rolling "Airstream Song" and ballads that wind up as the highlights here. And these slower songs are highlights because they're not as insistent as the rowdy, swaggering rockers -- they flow as naturally as "Kerosene" did on Lambert's debut. Miranda can still pull off her tough-girl attitude -- she's turned into a pro, able to turn on her character at the drop of a dime -- but Revolution is somewhat weighed down by the perception that Lambert is nothing but a rocking rebel when she is, as the sum total of this strong but overly long album ultimately proves, so much more. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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Country - Released January 25, 2005 | Epic

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It's arguable that Miranda Lambert's debut album, Kerosene, is the first true Nashville product produced in the wake of Gretchen Wilson, crafted with an eye on the audience that Wilson's stylized redneck raunch won. Of course, with her golden blonde hair and good looks, Lambert seems like she would be crushed by the rampaging Gretchen, and there's a certain truth that Miranda is a bit fabricated and polished. After all, she started out as an actress, appearing in the long-shelved Piper Perabo teen comedy Slap Her She's French (finally released under the lamentably tame title She Will Have Way), and only got a foothold in the music industry by participating in USA's countrified American Idol knockoff, Nashville Star, where she placed in the top three. All this suggests that Lambert will be as slickly packaged as, say, a Southern Diana DeGarmo, but pop music works in mysterious ways: as it turns out, Lambert wrote all of the tunes on her debut, whereas the seemingly more genuine Wilson only wrote about half. That said, Kerosene lacks the gonzo humor that Big & Rich brought to Here for the Party, and Lambert's sweet girlish voice seems too tame for some of the livelier material. But that's not to say that those tunes don't work as well as the gentler pop tunes (the ballads tend to be a little treacly and nondescript), all of which are sturdily written, delivered with conviction, and given just enough gloss for an appealing sheen. Against all odds, this a rarity in modern mainstream country: a piece of product that's friendly, tuneful, sharper, and more genuine than it initially seems. Maybe Miranda needed a show like to Nashville Star to jump-start her career, but the show gave her the opportunity to make this thoroughly winning debut. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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Country - Released November 1, 2011 | RCA Records Label Nashville

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Firmly established as a formidable country star with her 2009 album Revolution, Miranda Lambert takes some liberties on its 2011 sequel, Four the Record, letting the music breathe and not being afraid to have no less than eight of its 14 songs bear credits by other writers. No other Lambert album relies so heavily on tunes from other songwriters, and while it’s certainly true she may have been kept busy by her side project Pistol Annies (a trio with Ashley Monroe and Angaleena Presley, whose album appeared just two months before Four the Record and contained eight Lambert co-writes), the lack of emphasis on writing shifts focus to the music, which is assured, relaxed, and varied. After slowly opening with “All Kinds of Kinds,” the album hits a slinky, quirky blues grind on “Fine Tune,” cruises into rocking country on “Fastest Girl in Town,” kicks up dust on “Mama’s Broken Heart,” gets real gone on the honky tonk throwback “Same Old You,” belts out country-soul on “Baggage Claim,” and does a soft-shoe shuffle on “Easy Living,” all sly but substantial changes of pace that give Four the Record considerable depth. Despite the fiery album cover, Lambert isn’t playing to her caricature: what makes her compelling isn’t her tough-girl schtick, it’s her casual versatility, and with Four the Record, she’s digging deeper than ever before and finding considerable riches. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine
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Country - Released May 1, 2007 | Columbia Nashville

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Country - Released April 13, 2018 | Vanner Records - RCA Records Label Nashville

Country - Released January 15, 2016 | Low Country Sound - Elektra

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Film Soundtracks - Released April 28, 2015 | RCA Records Label Nashville

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Country - Released May 26, 2015 | RCA Records Label Nashville

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