You could be forgiven for being cynical about this album. Billy Bob Thornton as a serious musician? Why should he be any different from all the other Hollywood stars who've dabbled in recording studios over the years, usually with horrible results? But in fact, Arkansas's second-favourite son (after Bill Clinton of course) played with a number of bar-room bands before hitting the big time as a thespian - and as his excellent second album shows, his songwriting is far more than just a vanity project. The Edge Of The World is simply a class act, an earthy blend of blues, hillbilly and country rock, all sung in Thornton's transfixing baritone drawl. Celeb watchers will find plenty of titillation in the anguished lyrics, some of which are clearly inspired by their author's breakup with Angelina Jolie. More importantly, however, his songs have a distinctive, Deep South gothic sensibility that gives them a real emotional weight. It may sound ridiculous, but if he keeps this up, Thornton might just end up as the spiritual heir to Johnny Cash.