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on 13 July 2000
Audible Sigh Vigilantes of Love Compass Records 7 4295 2 CD: (Full Price) Lenght: 46.18 mins.
Reviewd by Nicholas Wood
I keep telling people that I have found this great new band and they ask me the name - so I tell them: ÔVigilantes of LoveÕ, and they say - ÒOh what a crap nameÓ- but they remember it. So do I forgive them the name? You bet I do with an album like this. VOL are basically a three piece fronted by songwriter guitarist and singer Bill Mallonee. They are an American band much in the tradition of REM or Counting Crows - soft rock with very creative lyrics. Mallonee is an extremely talented songwriter, and his passion for, and sensitivity to being alive shines out in his songs. The album and album cover makes a plea for common humanity, they come over as very caring sincere people. Of the twelve songs on the album, the third, ÔResplendentÕ, is outstanding and one of the best songs I have heard for years, with an amazing melody. VOL are joined on this track by singer Emmylou Harris - but if you think this is some sort of Country and Western mush, think again. It bites, dances with you and leaves you spellbound. The other eleven songs range from good, through very good to near outstanding (the last song Ôsolar SystemÕ being almost a rival to Resplendent) If you like solid musicianship, and creative thoughtful rock music this is a band you should find out about. If you want to hear them, listen to Bob Harris on Saturday evenings on BBC Radio 2. It was this show which first put me onto them months ago and he seems to play them most weeks. They also tour the UK quite often and some of the album was even recorded in Cheltenham of all places, so watch out for them. Like the people I tell about this album, remember the name, it is, I think, a name that you will hear a lot more of over the years to come. An outstanding album.
Review published in Sacred Hoop Magazine Issue 29.
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on 7 August 2000
Bill Mallonee and the Vigilantes of Love. To me my favourite discovery of the last couple of years. As some might say, this CD "kicks ass" and you feeling it throbbing nicely for a long time after. Belting good tunes, intelligent lyrics and the smugness that comes with knowing that you've found something quite select. Buy it, love it, tell your friends...that's what I've done.
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on 9 June 2000
Buddy Miller, the man behind Emmylou Harris' Spyboy album, works with the long-serving Bill Mallonee and his Vigilantes of Love to produce not only one of the band's strongest albums to date, but also one of the definitive albums of the "No Depressions" movement.
The band's live show has been their strength over recent years and the album manages to catch much of that energy while giving the whole thing a few special studio tweaks. Guest musicians like Buddy Miller and Kenny Hutson add some high energy mandolin and mando-guitar, while Julie Miller and Emmylou Harris make fine backing vocalists.
All in all, a fantastic album.
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on 14 September 2001
Once again, one of the most underated singer/songwriters in his genre crafts a series of songs that explore what it is to be human in a world that often seems hostile to its dominant species.
Bill's voice carries his songs well, and while some of us may yearn for songs of the calibre of 'blister soul' or 'skin', this album continues his narrative recountings of a Christian's pilgramage in the 21st Century.
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on 3 December 2001
One stand-out track swamped by mediocre soft rock. Anyone buying this on the strength of the heartbreakingly beautiful 'Resplendent' may find it disappointingly ordinary.
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