A Blessing And A Curse

  • Record Label: New West
  • Release Date: Apr 18, 2006
Metascore
78

Generally favorable reviews - based on 24 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 24
  2. Negative: 0 out of 24
  1. Entertainment Weekly
    91
    Finds [Drive-By Truckers] turing from the social concerns of 2004's Dirty South to the more personal with career-best results. [21 Apr 2006, p.75]
  2. If it isn't as ambitious as the three releases that preceded it, it still confirms that the Drive-By Truckers are still what they were before making this record: the best hard rock band in America today.
  3. As a whole, A Blessing And A Curse is the album that Drive-By Truckers have always threatened to make, a hard-rocking testament to the intelligence, sensitivity, and soul of a people often discredited for lacking all three.
  4. Magnet
    90
    Cement[s] the Truckers' status as one of the best rock 'n' roll bands going. [#71, p.93]
  5. While there are unmistakable traces of that swampy, sweaty sound, particularly in the three-guitar sturm und twang of the title track, at other points the Truckers openly embrace their rock and punk roots, as if hoping to stomp that nettlesome Southern Rock label into the ground.
  6. It's the kind of album that finds its own cozy place somewhere between Lynyrd Skynyrd and Leonard Cohen.
  7. Uncut
    80
    A Blessing... is perhaps a more personal and introspective record than usual. But truly there's still a lot to marvel at. [Apr 2006, p.112]
  8. Blender
    80
    The barn-burners are still grimy with brawling guitar, but more than ever shot through with delicate light... and the pithy ballads are crisp as cold beer. [May 2006, p.108]
  9. Mojo
    80
    There's plenty of soul and swagger again here. [Apr 2006, p.94]
  10. For the Truckers... it’s an abnormally concise record that also happens to be their least sloppy.
  11. Taken for what it is, a straight up and down rock album, ABAAC is quite good.
  12. Spin
    75
    Musically, A Blessing and a Curse is the Truckers' least complicated album. [May 2006, p.93]
  13. All in all, this is a calmer Truckers set, less ragged and more polished.
  14. The New York Times
    70
    This album feels smaller and more casual than some of its predecessors. [17 Apr 2006]
  15. For the first time in the group's decade of existence, they've made an album that doesn't entirely live up to their reputation.
  16. It showcases an artistic range that had been up to this point unexplored.
  17. Under The Radar
    70
    Keeping its ambitions manageable and its wheels on the rails, Blessing is a simpler pleasure and ultimately a lesser triumph. [#13, p.84]
  18. With its broader musical canvas, "Blessing" may seem like a left-turn to diehard Truckerheads, but it's likely a wise move toward growing the DBT fan base.
  19. [A Blessing] isn't as detail-rich as 2004's The Dirty South, but it's another engaging variation on old-school Southern rock.
  20. Even in a lower gear, the Truckers are hardly idling.
  21. A Blessing and a Curse easily qualifies as the Truckers’ most straightforward album.
User Score
8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 18 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 9
  2. Negative: 0 out of 9
  1. VincentH.
    Mar 19, 2007
    7
    Another amazing album from probably the most consistent rock-band around today. DBT have never made a bad album...ever. They rarely even Another amazing album from probably the most consistent rock-band around today. DBT have never made a bad album...ever. They rarely even write weak songs, so despite the fact that this is easily their overall weakest album since Pizza Deliverance, I am comparing this album to three masterpieces in a row (SRO, DD, TDS), so it is still a solid album with more great hooks and musicianship than 90% of any other bands out there. There are three songs I usually skip cause they are kinda boring (Aftermath USA, Gravity's Gone, Space City), but the rest of the songs are all brilliant. Particularly "Feb 14" (contrinuing Patterson Hood's tradition of beautiful and poignant love songs) and "Daylight", two of the best songs DBT have ever recorded. Essentially I love all the Patterson Hood and Jason Isbell songs, but tend to skip the Cooley tracks (sorry Mike...you're still an amazing guitar player). Anyways, if you like DBT and own any of their previous album, you should buy this one and you will love it. I promise. Full Review »
  2. LawrenxceP
    Aug 7, 2006
    8
    Still the best and most solid honest country-rock band around..."world of hurt" is one of their very best and most heartbreaking tunes.
  3. stetsonk
    Jun 28, 2006
    5
    After 10 years and 2 absolutely belting albums - in SRO and Dirty South - the Truckers were busting to burst into the mainstream with this After 10 years and 2 absolutely belting albums - in SRO and Dirty South - the Truckers were busting to burst into the mainstream with this record. Like one of the loser jocks populating their best tunes, they blew it. It almost feels deliberate. Full Review »