Van Lear Rose

Metascore
97

Universal acclaim - based on 27 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 27
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 27
  3. Negative: 0 out of 27
  1. It’s not as remarkable a transformation as the one Rick Rubin performed on Johnny Cash, but this is a fine collection and as pleasurable a listen as it undoubtedly was to record.
  2. White’s arrangements and production are simple and effective, clear without gloss.
  3. Recast[s] her matchless mountain holler and ever-sturdy songwriting genius in the milieu of gut-bucket blues riffs and blistering rock guitar, making Lynn sound not so much reinvigorated as reimagined, given a raucously purposeful, wildly authoritative new playground for her still-terrific proto-feminist (even in 2004) tropes.
  4. Van Lear Rose is remarkably bold, celebratory and honest. It's a homecoming for a small-town musician gifted with poise, humor and compassion, but at its very heart, it's happy to be just a kick-ass country record.
  5. The beauty of the album rests in Loretta Lynn's exceptional songwriting.
  6. The brilliance of Van Lear Rose is not just how the two approaches complement each other, but how the record captures the essence of Loretta Lynn's music even as it has flourishes that are distinctly Jack.
  7. Lynn and White weren't straining to make history, just a damn good Loretta Lynn album. But it sure sounds classic anyway.
  8. Her voice sounds so goddamn fresh, spontaneous, uncompromised. There's an intensely visceral quality to these performances that is so utterly compelling.
  9. The result is genuine alt-country at a time when the term has come to signify little more than middling acoustic rock.
  10. 90
    Perhaps the album of her career.
  11. The most personally felt, universally inclusive record of her career.
  12. Kudos to White's preservation of Lynn's loving, narrative songwriting even when paired with his own grittier sensibilities. In doing so, the two unlikely bedfellows have cut a classic.
  13. 100
    The duo's collaboration on Van Lear Rose is unexpectedly gripping, a raucous slice of vintage Nashville fuelled by Lynn's down-home wisdom, twangy gee-tars and White's inspired hand at production.
  14. A darkly compelling masterpiece that taps into the pitch-black id of Johnny Cash’s best records.
  15. The final product exceeds the hype.
  16. The fact that a woman of Lynn's tenure can slide so easily into what is essentially an alt-country environment without losing any of her down-home authenticity simply underscores her versatility and timelessness.
  17. A rich, rewarding showcase for a woman whose voice, spirit, and energy have not faded.
  18. Van Lear Rose exceeds all expectations, a bold collaboration in which artists from two different musical universes forge a memorable work that neither could have created alone.
  19. Less rehearsal, less production, and fewer layers of sound let Loretta's Lorettaness shine through.
  20. Under The Radar
    100
    It's just that damn good. [#7]
  21. Mojo
    100
    Lynn's voice... is as strong as it was during her heyday, while her songwriting ability has only increased with age. [Jun 2004, p.98]
  22. Uncut
    100
    White's willfully basic approach is what gives Van Lear Rose its freshness.... If you thought Rick Rubin's Johnny Cash reinvention was impressive, wait 'til you grab a fistful of this. [Album of the Month, June 2004, p.84]
  23. Blender
    100
    Some of the most gripping singing you're going to hear all year.... A brave, unrepeatable record that speaks to her whole life. [May 2004, p.123]
  24. Q Magazine
    90
    Nothing short of remarkable. [Jun 2004, p.102]
  25. Entertainment Weekly
    100
    Crackling with a bristling immediacy, Van Lear Rose yanks Lynn into the present while never abandoning musical traditions that continue to define her, her voice, and her material. [30 Apr 2004, p.160]
  26. Spin
    100
    The toughest record ever made by a former mainstream country artist.... If all the songs don't rival her finest work, the arrangements pull them up. [May 2004, p.105]
  27. The A.V. Club
    90
    Given a chance to be herself, Lynn responds with a powerful return to form. [28 Apr 2004]
User Score
8.6

Universal acclaim- based on 123 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 62 out of 69
  2. Negative: 5 out of 69
  1. IxatA.
    Sep 19, 2007
    10
    Loretta Lynn's Van Lear Rose surpasses all of my favorite artists' album(and that includes bjork and white's band)... miss Loretta Lynn's Van Lear Rose surpasses all of my favorite artists' album(and that includes bjork and white's band)... miss being mrs and portland oregon are just exceptional. Full Review »
  2. Mar 23, 2015
    0
    Gay boy honky tonky wonky juggalo hippity clink clank wopperjiggy trash. I did not like this album. The songwriting is not gripping and I cryGay boy honky tonky wonky juggalo hippity clink clank wopperjiggy trash. I did not like this album. The songwriting is not gripping and I cry at the bad production. Full Review »
  3. SamanthaB
    Apr 5, 2007
    10
    great CD!!! I love it! I am 21 and this CD is awesome for any age.