Few voices in country music possess the passion and pistol-packing power of Wynonna Judd—and if ever there were a time the format needed a heroic womanly return, this would be D-Day.

Few voices in country music possess the passion and pistol-packing power of Wynonna Judd—and if ever there were a time the format needed a heroic womanly return, this would be D-Day. As with past efforts, Wy remains enough of a renegade to break beyond Nashville's boundaries, texturing "What the World Needs Now Is Love" with an intrepid vocal and instrumental palette. Leading the list is the banjo-picking title track, an anthemic ode to optimism and a top 15 hit at country radio. Beyond, it's impossible to find a track among the 14 not worthy of praise, whether it's the loose, hook-sodden "It All Comes Down to Love," the raucous "(No One's Gonna) Break Me Down" or the nostalgic "Flies on the Butter" (featuring mom Naomi). Still, nothing beats Wynonna painting the sky with a crafty ballad—and the diva-worthy "Heaven Help Me" is one of her great moments. Start to finish, "World" is among the finest albums of the year. God love you, Wynonna.—CT

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