Sound — 10
Maintaining the trend seen on The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion and Amorica, The Black Crowes continued to diversify their sound on their fourth official studio release, titled Three Snakes and One Charm. Slide and pedal steel guitars, harmonica, horn parts, prominent acoustic guitars, and even a banjo help to enhance the texture of the songs on this album, giving it a sound that ranges from psychedelic (Evil Eye and How Much For Your Wings?) to funky ((Only) Halfway to Everywhere). One of the strongest tracks on Three Snakes is Girl From A Pawnshop, a beautiful ballad that ends with an outro that I can only describe as perfect.
Lyrics — 10
This album features some of my personal favorite lyrics from Chris Robinson's lyrical repertoire. The previously mentioned Girl From A Pawnshop and Better When You're Not Alone are the obvious highlights, and while the lyrics in Blackberry and (Only) Halfway to Everywhere might not be considered among Robinson's best, the rest of the album is lyrically very solid in my opinion. As with the lyrics, the vocals are once again very good for the most part (some don't like the zany guest vocals on Halfway to Everywhere). Background vocals help to strengthen the choruses on many of the tracks, and we even get a few lines sung solely by brother Rich Robinson on How Much For Your Wings?, which is a first on a Crowes album. Quite possibly my favorite moment on any Black Crowes album, and maybe even up with one of my favorite moments in music period is the interlude in Bring On, Bring On (starting with "And on the day I said goodbye"), and the reason lies mostly with the lyrics and vocal delivery.
Overall Impression — 10
Once again, I have no choice but to rank Three Snakes and One Charm with the very best of the Black Crowes. In my opinion, it can hold its own when compared to The Southern Harmony and Musical Companion and Amorica, and is certainly a valid candidate for the best album the band has released.