Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Consumer Guide Album

Carly Pearce: 29: Written in Stone [Big Machine, 2021]
Since the perfect DL-only 29 EP this inflates into an album is here in three- and four-track chunks and the eight additional songs are OK-plus, my recommended strategy is to buy the album but then mostly play the EP you burn from it. OK-plusses include "Diamondback," about the stone of the album title, "What He Didn't Do," which includes "Treat me right, put me first, be a man of his word," and two drinking songs, both anti. But from the title "29"--"the year that I got married and divorced"--to the post-breakup closer "Day One," which progresses through days 17, 45, and 92, the EP is all about trying again, as for any 29-year-old it should be. A-