Miranda Lambert’s 'Platinum': What the Critics Are Saying
Reviewers are unanimous in praising the album as one of the year's best so far.
Miranda Lambert’s fifth album, Platinum, on the RCA Records label, looks to be the one to finally catapult her to much-deserved crossover stardom to match her fame as the wife of The Voice star Blake Shelton. The release features guest appearances from Little Big Town, Grammy-nominated western string ensemble the Time Jumpers (featuring Vince Gill) and Carrie Underwood. Already well-established in the country world, the album title deals with that success and her hair color, touching on the romance which has made her a fixture in the tabloids.
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It’s a “classic double-album where the misses enhance the home runs and, eventually, are endearing in their own terms,” according to All Music Guide in its rave review. “By most measures, she reigns supreme in the 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.”
The N.Y. Times’ Jon Caramanica calls Platinum “vivacious, clever and slickly rowdy,” while praising Lambert as a “sophisticated radical, a wry country feminist and an artist learning to experiment widely but also with less abrasion.” He calls her characters in these songs “complex, self-confident and self-lacerating ... completely knowing and in on the joke,” while adding they feature “some of the most incisive songwriting in any genre.”
Rolling Stone’s Will Hermes calls her album in his four-and-a-half star review “a cheeky view of her ascent to country music Queen Bee … But mostly it shows how Lambert earned her throne; by singing top-shelf songs in the voice of a woman getting real. Listening to her records is like eavesdropping in a hair salon,” concluding that she “[sounds] every bit as real as your next morning after.”
Lambert does something unique among her peers swimming in the same Nashville song pool, simply by sounding distinctly like her self,” praises Boston Globe’s Sarah Rothman, adding the album’s 16 tracks “bounce from humid honky tonk to glossy arena stage to rustic front porch with sass and ease.”
Platinum is praised as Lambert’s “most mature, well-rounded effort to date,” according to Spin’s Dan Hyman, “a supremely balanced set, tailor-made to reflect the singer’s fully evolved dichotomous persona: a tough-as-nails traditionalist pining for the good-ol-days who still gets her kicks moonlighting as a cowboy-boots-wearing tease.”
USA Today critic Jerry Shriver’s three (out of four)-star review says “the famously spitfire” performer … “trades in her flamethrower for a foot warmer … Yet her wit, humor and sass are intact.”
Newsday’s Glenn Gamboa calls Platinum the “best album of 2014 so far,” praising Lambert, who "simply followers her heart and speaks her mind ... This is about ripping away the packaging to let Miranda be Miranda.”