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Billy Bob Thornton

Beautiful Door – 2007 (New Door/Universal)

Reviewed by Brian Baker

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CDs by Billy Bob Thornton

Music fans expecting the same sort of sophistication and nuance Billy Bob Thornton brings to acting roles in clever films such as "Sling Blade" or "A Simple Plan" will be disappointed in the actor's fourth album. The songs boast simplistic melodies and repetitive lyrics that do little to advance mood or sense of place (witness the sparse thoughts in "Hope for Glory," which consists mainly of a guitar solo and the singer chanting the title of the track.

Thornton is entrenched in the California music and movie scene and he brings stellar musicians including bassist Leland Sklar and singer Graham Nash. But of this collection of a dozen songs, only the last track, "The Boy Is Gone" boasts enough instrumentation and development to really grab the ear. Otherwise, these plodding tracks suffer from lackluster production and the need for a little more musical seasoning to please the ear.