Out of all of Johnny Cash's Americana concept albums, The Rambler is by far the most forced and stilted. More of a radio play than an album, the record is about Cash's drive across America, where he picks up hitchhikers along the way. Every song on The Rambler is tied together by dialogues between Cash and the hitchhikers, which means the record never develops a sense of momentum. Furthermore, the songs themselves are slight, without much musically or lyrically to reccommend them. In all, it's an ambitious, overwrought failure that is fascinating for one listen, but nearly impossible to sit through more than once.
The Rambler Review
by Stephen Thomas Erlewine