In Cash: The Autobiography, he admitted that as his sales fell off in the Eighties, he became apathetic. He’d relapsed into some destructive habits, too. Recalling his sessions with producer Billy Sherrill, Cash wrote, “We tried, sort of, but we certainly didn’t give it our best.” You might expect Out Among the Stars – a set of unreleased songs he cut with Sherrill in 1981 and 1984 – to be a contract-fulfilling sleepwalk. (Cash put out several mostly mediocre LPs in those years, but left this material unfinished; it was discovered after his death.) Instead, it proves that even at his most uninterested, Cash couldn’t help but make a record with weight, moral complexity and grim humor.