Entertainment Weekly - No. 812, p.72
"[A] spunky set of honky-tonk, country-rock, and Sheryl Crow-style ballads....[Lambert] clearly knows how to write a killer tune." - Grade: B+
Personnel: Miranda Lambert (background vocals); Miranda Lambert; Mike Wrucke (guitar, banjo, keyboards, background vocals); Randy Scruggs (guitar, mandolin); Jay Joyce, Richard Bennett (guitar); Hank Singer (fiddle); Joey Huffman (keyboards); Chad Cromwell (drums); Eric Darken (percussion); Mando Saenz, Natalie Hemby, Buddy Miller (background vocals); Glenn Worf, Jim Hoke, Russ Pahl.
Audio Mixer: Mike Wrucke.
Recording information: OMNI Sound; Wrucke's House, Nashville, TN.
Photographer: Jack Guy.
Unknown Contributor Role: Jim Hoke.
Many contestants on AMERICAN IDOL and similar TV shows go on to greater success, but due to their relative lack of experience, often have a hard time finding their niche. Not Miranda Lambert--when KEROSENE was released in 2005, the NASHVILLE STAR third-place winner was barely out of her teens, but she had already spent years honing her craft in bars. In addition to being a confident vocalist and strong-willed businessperson, Lambert is a crafty songwriter whose work is easily on par with that of Nashville veterans twice her age.
The title track is a pounding, attitude-filled country-rocker reminiscent of John Cougar Mellencamp's "Rain on the Scarecrow." (That this diminutive young blonde woman can spit out lines like "Trade the truth for a lie/Cheatin' ain't really a crime" so convincingly is also startling.) "I Can't Be Bothered" is straight-up honky-tonk, replete with whining steel guitar, Buck Owens-worthy twangy Telecaster, and a jaunty dance beat, while "Me and Charlie Talking" is funky swamp-country of the Jerry Reed variety, albeit with lovelorn lyrics that reveal Lambert's old soul. An uncommonly accomplished debut, KEROSENE is the first outing by a genuine all-around talent.