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19
4.4 out of 5 stars
By A Thread
Format: Audio CDChange
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
on 4 January 2010
Comfortably the Mule's best studio album, "By A Thread" touches all their familiar bases and then some. It's a work of remarkable variety and maturity which never loses sight of the band's southern rock roots.

Proceedings start with a bang, the rocking 'Broke Down On The Brazos' given one mighty turbo charge by ZZ Top's Billy Gibbons - his most blistering guitar work in recent memory. 'Any Open Window' also keeps the pedal to the metal whilst other highlights include the grimy sleazy blues of 'Inside Outside Woman Blues #3', 'Railroad Boy' - a Warren Haynes arrangement of a traditional English murder ballad and the jazz-rock / psychedelic 'Scenes From A Troubled Mind'. There's even room for a gentle ballad 'Forevermore' providing colour and texture to a strong and well-balanced set that shows a band unafraid of stepping outside its comfort zone.

Clearly, this particular mule can still pack quite a kick.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful
on 23 October 2009
This is the first time I have left a review but I felt compelled to do so as it is so good. It not often in recent years, that I have enjoyed every track on a new Album.
Yes I am a fan of Southern Rock and anyone that likes that genre will not be disappointed. However it is much more than that. Or, if like me you feel that Southern Rock is a true melting pot of all forms of music, then here it is.
My favourite track at the moment is Railroad Boy and very old folk song given a whole new lease of life. It opens with a very African sounding guitar, moves into a traditional folk lament and then rocks up into a very Led Zep style tune.
Buy it and no that you are supporting a truly great band.
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14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon 27 October 2009
I still sometimes wake up in a cold sweat, aghast at the horror that was the Gov't Mule remix / thingymajig / dub album that "Mighty High". A record that was so wrong, I could have wept. So I was a wee bit wary when their new album landed on my doormat. Would it be a return to their glories, or another step towards redundancy? Well, with some minor qualms, I'm plumping for the former.

The opening track, 'Broke Down On The Brazos', is a thing of wonder. Texas funk fried Blues with ZZ Top's Billy Gibbons popping in to add some greasy guitar licks. And things continue in fine fettle on tracks like 'Monday Mourning Meltdown' and 'Frozen Fear'. However, Warren Haynes seems keen to continue his quest for uninspired reggae rhythms which leech inappropriately into songs such as 'Steppin' Lightly'.

But new bass player Jorgen Carlsson seems to have slotted in seamlessly, and Haynes continues to demonstrate one of the best, if under appreciated, voices of the last two decades as he shines on tunes like the immense, Bluesy 'Railroad Boy'. Fans of his guitar picking also have plenty to salivate over, as the music ranges from Blues to classic rock to sixties psychedelia, with almost everything the band touching, turning to gold.

Minor quibbles aside, it's good to have them back.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 28 November 2009
I always buy everything that the Mule put out as they are miles ahead of most bands, even when not firing on all cylinders, although the last 2 albums (showing my age again!!!) haven't been their best. By A Thread, however, is one of their best, with 11 great tracks. Standouts are Broke Down on the Brazos (with guest Billy Gibbons on fine form), Gordon James and Scenes from a Troubled Mind. Just buy it and immerse yourself in one of THE best albums of 2009
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 21 November 2009
My first Mule purchase and you have; dirty, greasy southern rawk with a tinge of blue. All the hallmarks of the Allmans are here, only eleven tracks but most are of a decent length. It did take a few listens to earn five stars. Equals; Chickenfoot, Skynyrd and Mantis for album of 2009!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 7 April 2010
Warren Haynes proves he has both a great voice & can play guitar a bit too. A varied album of blues, rock, psychedelia & even a gentle ballard. Great guitar on 1st track from Billy Gibbons (ZZ Top) Not a weak track. Think Allman Bros, Led Zep. A real grower & great album. Buy it.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 17 January 2010
this is a proper return to form for the band If you like great tunes and outstanding musicianship then you'll be not disappointed Broke Down ON The Brazos[with Billy Gibbons],Railroad Boy and Frozen Fear really stand out. Recommended
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on 16 May 2013
I find "By A Thread" to be the best studio album by Gov't Mule, a group with their forte clearly in the live arena. The writing is strong here, with fresh ideas and well executed. They are as always in fine form, playing with the strength, which comes with so many years spent on the road in one or another connection. As "Allmann Brothers" kin they simply carry on the torch layed down so many years ago!
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on 1 April 2014
As a lover of guitar based rock music, this cd hits all the right spots.I bought it after buying "Shout" and whilst I feel it is not as instantly accessible, it grows on you. A disc that needs to be listened to in it's entirety to be appreciated. Go on buy it, listen and enjoy!!
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on 22 October 2009
This new album(I've heard the pre-release) is a bit of a departure fom the last album. Warren Haynes has got to be one of the most hard working and talented musicians around. If you love Free, Humble Pie, Allmann Bros, Mountain, Crowes etc you'll love this. They've never released a poor album yet. Haynes has a fantastic voice and he plays a mean Gibson to boot!
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