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American Murder Ballads
 
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American Murder Ballads

10 July 2009 | Format: MP3

£5.49 (VAT included if applicable)
Buy the CD album for £6.18 and get the MP3 version for FREE. Does not apply to gift orders.
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Product details

  • Original Release Date: 10 July 2009
  • Label: Not Now Music
  • Copyright: (C) 2009 Not Now Music Ltd 2009
  • Total Length: 2:33:04
  • Genres:
  • ASIN: B002SSV3BC
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 79,193 in Albums (See Top 100 in Albums)

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Dr. Delvis Memphistopheles TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 1 April 2010
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Gun Club, Nick Cave and the Cramps hit the town in the late 70's early 80's with grunt, grind, rhythm and booze after mining the gold seams of Americana for nuggets. They whooped up a punk party based on a forgotten milieu. The Cramps unashamed at their plagarism clearly signposted the way backwards to Continent Billy; Sonics Ocean, Wray land, glen glen highway, Patton gardens and elvis mansions.

The Gun Club wore their hearts on their sleeves and reworked Robert johnson, John Henry, Railroad Bill and John Hardy. Nick always pointed the way backwards to the early blues, the worlds of Stackalee and Henry Lee. They are all captured on this collection,a total of 50 freshly shorn and deloused delinquents convicted for robbery, theft and muhda captured and recapitulating their muhdarous ways on disc. A multi hued album parading the greats from Johnny Cash to Ledbelly. The essence of the soul shines beyond the misery of the greatest depression, when literally there was no work. This stretched for 10 years in the USA until the 2nd World War bailed out the free market to roll on once again.

These are the b'stard offspring of the great depression, the bleak arid landscapes of cacti feeding off the last drop of water whilst tumbleweed are chased by dogs across arid empty martian like Oklahoma panoramas.

Country and Western, Blues, folk, a pot pourri of Celtic, Gaelic, Anglo Saxon and Black African ideas mixed and germinated in wooden lean to's, shacks, tents, wagons and saloons are put on id.

This is for those who can take their music naked without the thrills of production. These are the cries of poverty crying in the dark whilst maintaining their cynicism in the day. Murder Ballads are all about loss.
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By Hryzko on 25 Dec. 2014
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Items as described and delivered on time.
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1 of 29 people found the following review helpful By michael mcgee on 11 Aug. 2010
Format: MP3 Download
Title sounds promising given the state of the nation and you'd expect something hard, astringent and pointed. What you get is a tired compilation of miscellaneous individual recordings. One to miss.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
A few gems here, but a lot of less-interesting work as well... 5 Oct. 2009
By William E. Adams - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD
First I have to say that this is a pretty good price for the amount of music one receives, even if the compilation, as most are, is quite uneven in quality. One of the oldest tracks and one of the youngest on here are two of the best: Mississipi John Hurt's version of "Frankie and Johnny" is from 1928, but sounds like this week's fresh master, and Cisco Houston's "The Killer" from 1958 represents one of his best vocals ever. Other Disc One highlights, in addition to "Frankie" include tracks by Ramblin' Jack Elliott, The Kingston Trio, Johnny Cash, and another by Cisco, "Railroad Bill." Still, I only really liked six of the 25 offerings on Disc One, although I have been a folk and traditional country fan for 50 years at least.

The Woody Guthrie tracks on Disc One are particularly disappointing. His version of "Billy the Kid" has some lyrics I never heard in other artists' recordings of the same song, and Woody's changes are historically inaccurate enough to ruin the experience. The second Guthrie song on this half of the album, "Slipknot" is just not all that good, as poetry or as performance. Pete Seeger does a competent job on the traditional "Jesse James" and thank the Lord he does not offer the terrible version composed by his friend Leadbelly, available on a different compilation on the market.

On Disc Two, it is hard to match the excellence of Cisco's opening track, "The Killer." While not the best long folk ballad ever written, it is indeed one of his finest singing jobs, and he had many in his career. (I think "East Texas Red" by Woody to be a better song, and Cisco's version of that one, sadly, is not included here.)

Woody is better represented on this disc, with his two-part "Tom Joad" although it is not primarily a murder ballad, but a clever condensation of the Steinbeck novel "The Grapes of Wrath." Jack Elliott and Johnny Cash also do good songs well on this half. The rest of the disc is much like the first one: traditional folk and country songs with death taking center stage, performed more or less well by more or less second-ranked artists. I have always had a special interest in the Lindbergh baby kidnapping case because I grew up within ten miles of that crime scene, but "The Trial of Bruno Hauptman" which I have always wanted to hear, turns out to be not good enough to live past the event it describes.

If you like music in this style, and do not own as much of it as I do, and can afford the asking price, you might be happy you purchased this. Just be warned: there are a lot of mountain-style sad songs here by lesser performers than the Carter Family and recorded in the 20's and 30's...definitely a minority taste item, this.
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