Metascore
79

Generally favorable reviews - based on 18 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 15 out of 18
  2. Negative: 0 out of 18
Buy On
  1. Dec 6, 2011
    80
    On the surface of things, this is a bit of an odd task, taking left-behind lyrics from one of the great songwriters and breathing life into them. But nobody here seems intimidated; they seem honored -- and there are some pretty good songs that come out of the project.
  2. Nov 9, 2011
    85
    If you're an old Hank Williams fan, The Lost Notebooks is more than enough reason to celebrate. If you're new to the music of country's greatest singer, this new collection is a wonderful place from which to begin to explore his music.
  3. Oct 26, 2011
    70
    This tribute has a back-to-the-future quality, a sad wave at a sensibility that has slipped out of our reach: lost, indeed.
  4. Unlike Woody Guthrie, Williams is loved more for his singing than his lyrics, and boy does some of this retrofitted doggerel lack character as entuned and delivered.
  5. Oct 13, 2011
    80
    Almost 60 years after his death, both men and women of all ages can still identify with the words he wrote. They are timeless to the point that they can be made modern without losing a step.
  6. 70
    The songs that stand out here are the ones that have the most authentic feel.
  7. Oct 5, 2011
    90
    Even the least attractive and most un-country voices heard here (let's not name names) have a unique, soulful quality that makes them suited for the deeply felt sentiments that fill The Lost Notebooks, a package that finds the heart of real country music still beating and Hank's vital presence anything but lost.
  8. 75
    Though some of the singers struggle with adding fullness to lyrics that could sound overly simplistic in the wrong hands, the legacy of Williams seems most alive, in almost a ventriloquist form, in Alan Jackson's "You've Been Lonesome, Too."
  9. Oct 4, 2011
    70
    Using Hank Williams' lyrics notebooks to imagine songs he never finished, The Lost Notebooks turns a vaguely necrophiliac idea into a startling reincarnation.
  10. 80
    The album is a beauty, none the less, the care put into it confirming Williams's exalted position in the tower of song.
  11. 60
    An entertaining exercise, though of Hank's celebrated yodel there is, alas, no sign.
  12. Oct 3, 2011
    70
    Perhaps inevitably, the overall tone is reverent, verging on precious--everyone adheres faithfully to Williams' template of rugged three-chord structures, twanging guitars, weeping violins and keening pedal steel.
  13. While nothing grates, all it really achieves is to make you want to hear Hank sing them.
  14. 80
    It's the communal sentiment underlying such ostensibly personal heartache that gives Williams's songs much of their power, that draws the listener in as an emotional fellow-traveller.
  15. Oct 3, 2011
    50
    That the album is so wildly uneven perhaps speaks to the underlying quandaries its concept presents.
  16. 83
    Fans like Jack White, Levon Helm, and Vince Gill provide original melodies, some too wan for the strength of the lyrics, which range from the deeply romantic to the 
corrosively aggressive.
  17. Mojo
    Dec 22, 2011
    60
    [A] curious but very listenable LP. [Nov 2011, p.99]
  18. Uncut
    Oct 18, 2011
    80
    What's most intriguing is the way each artist gets in character. [Nov 2011, p.104]

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