Wanda Jackson was, and, it seems, remains, almost 50 years later, the undisputed queen of rockabilly. Her self-titled comeback album from 2001 was a stellar example of her remaining rock & roll swagger, but this time out, she has a host of the faithful famous paying tribute. Dave Alvin, Elvis Costello, the Cramps, Lee Rocker, and the Cadillac Angels all join the rollicking festivities. Given a killer collection of songs, such as Paul Kennerley's title track with backing vocal support from Siedah Garrett, to a smoking version of the Louvin Brothers' "Cash on the Barrelhead," to the wooly instrumentation on some cuts - such as the Cramps burning through Charlie McCoy's "Funnel of Love" with her - Jackson's range seems indomitable and her voice is still in fine shape. Rosie Flores' help on the swinging "Woman Walk Out the Door" is a modern honky tonk masterpiece. The duet with Costello, a moving version of Buck Owens' "Crying Time," is simply one of the finest country-duet performances out there and deserves a Grammy. But it's on the tracks on which Jackson appears with her band, such as "Mean Mean Man," "Riot in Cell Block No. 9," and "It Happens Every Time" (Alvin plays guitar on them, but does not sing) with Jackson handling all the vocals that work the best. Simply put, this is a rock & roll dream, full of raw, sharp performances, killer songs, and Jackson's irrepressible ability to take even the most innocent song and make it salacious.
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