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  • Elsie
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4.8 out of 5 stars32
4.8 out of 5 stars
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 9 September 2011
In a recent interview for Uncut magazine Brian Fallon (lead singer of Springsteen-acolytes The Gaslight Anthem and leader of this new project) described how his goal with forming The Horrible Crowes was to update blues & soul music for this new generation. A generation which, ironically enough, has certainly had it's fair share of 'traditional' blues singers such as the late Amy Winehouse or the recent output of welsh songstress Duffy (not in the Muddy Waters sense of blues tradition admttedly, but lets not be too pedantic shall we?). If this was his goal then he is to certainly be applauded for ambition, even if sometimes he does fall a little short of anything approaching a 'revolution' in modern blues.

The 'modern' blues that I speak is of The Afghan Whigs & The National variety. So expect lots of slow-building numbers punctuated with chest-rousing finales & moments of reflection, all delivered with a level of pin-point precision that would make an X-Factor song-writer blush. Tracks such as 'Behold The Hurricane' and 'Go Tell Everybody' take this precision to excess levels and become a little too predictable & fall back onto the same 'one trick pony' sound that has sometimes plagued The Gaslight Anthem in the past. But when Fallon hits a high note, he can certainly hit hard & true. 'I Witnessed A Crime', 'Cherry Blossoms' and 'Ladykiller' are exlempary examples of the type of lounge-lizard blues that Greg Dulli & co where pedalling in their mid-ninety's heyday. Fallon perfectly captures that sleazy zeal that made so many Afghan Whigs & Mark Lanegan so irresistible.

Overall this is a mighty fine album and promises a lot from any future work Fallon and Ian Perkins (the other driving force behind this project) decide to create in the future.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Gaslight Anthem's Brian Fallon takes a side road with big buddy Ian Perkins and
proves to himself and us that life doesn't have to always follow the fast lane.
The Horrible Crowes album 'Elsie' is a largely reflective affair full of well-
crafted songs where Mr Fallon's fine voice gets plenty of room to breathe and
prosper. There are twelve numbers in the set and even when things build up a
head of steam, as they do on the soulful loose-limbed rocker 'Go Tell Everybody',
we sense a band taking care to ensure that the pot never quite boils over.

There are some truly lovely compositions to savour. Among them : the jangling
'Behold The Hurricane', with its delightful vocal punctuation marks, which seems
to have been touched by the spirit of Bruce Springsteen; 'Cherry Blossoms', a
gorgeously laconic country-tinged ballad, which shows off the softer side of
Mr Fallon's musical nature (from a whisper to a roar his gravely voice has rarely
sounded better) and the staccato shuffle of 'Black Betty & The Moon', which allows
ample space for both melody and words to bloom. Final track 'I Believe Jesus Brought
Us Together' rounds off the project in a deeply moving testament to one man's faith.

Messrs Fallon and Perkins can well afford to be proud of their labours.
'Elsie' is as fine an album as we are likely to hear this side of Christmas.

Highly Recommended.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 10 November 2011
Apologies to those wanting to buy the CD but I suspect Amazon will list this with the release in general (i.e. MP3 and CD too). I was tempted by the CD for ages but being something of a vinyl fan eventually decided to go for the vinyl record release. I'm pleased I did. Side One Dummy have opted for the increasingly popular trend of including a free download card with every record purchased, something which I wasn't expecting and isn't mentioned in the listing. Type in the web address and you can play your purchase in the car, on your Ipod, on your laptop etc. If only other vinyl releases would catch on. Of course it all sounds absolutely awesome blasting out my stereo at home too!

I won't make any comment on the album, you can get that information from some of the other excellent reviews contained on this page. I merely wanted to mention the free download that isn't covered elsewhere
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 15 January 2015
A fantastic album, which should be more than a side project for The Gaslight Anthem main man...soul and funk influences are strong, and clearly he's been listening to Greg Dulli's Whigs and Twilight usual there's a Springsteen influence in "Behold The Hurricane" and the superb, eminently repeatable "Crush".. "Sugar" sounds quite like Zooropa era U2, and the only track that misses for me is the Tom Waits pastiche "Mary Ann". Let's hope they do more, particularly as the quality of the Gaslight Anthem releases seems to be in decline
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on 10 January 2012
I love Gaslight Anthem albums 'Sink or Swim', '59 Sound' and American Slang - all great! I suppose I have warmed to The Horrible Crowes 'Elsie' so much as I really enjoy how this guy sings on the slower songs, took a few listens to get into the mood of the album as initially I found it all slow and sleepy sounding but found myself singing the songs in my head when the album wasnt on - always a good sign! I think if you enjoy the way he sings, and like his slower tunes on the Gaslight Anthem albums you could really love this album as well.
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on 10 October 2011
I don't often write a review however I have made the exception for what can only be described as an exceptional and remarkable record. The songwriting both lyrically and musically is amazing and will grip you from the first track through to the last. It is impossible to choose a favourite song on this album as they are all excellent yet different in their own way. Brian Fallon & Ian Perkins have out done themselves...word to the wise - everyone should own this album!
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on 27 November 2014
Being a massive Brian Fallon fan i brought this album as soon as it came out, having heard snippets of it on the revival tour. I fell in love with this album instantly and 3 years on i still love it. I know this project is on the back burner for both him and Perkins but i for one would love to hear more of Brians solo material. Any gaslight fan who doesn't own this already should buy it for their collection you won't be disappointed.
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on 22 November 2013
As a massive fan of The Gaslight Anthem, naturally I searched for more. Having owned all LP.s, EP,s and a selection of live performances. This album is great especially if you like Gaslight's slower songs like 'We did it when we were young' and the slow version of 'Boxer'. I wouldn't necessarily say if you like Gaslight you will love this, However if you prefer the soul of 'American Slang' to 'Sink or Swim' You will love this album.
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on 15 August 2012
This is just a sublime album of songs. I have been a massive fan of GLA for a few years and have all their albums but this outstrips American Slang and Handwritten (although both 8 out of 10 ers) and shows Fallon in a new and inspired light. Black Betty & The Moon, Behold The Hurricane and Blood Loss must be three of the best songs in my whole records collection. Can't wait for the next HC album. Quality.
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on 20 January 2013
If you like the softer side of The Gaslight Anthem's music (usually seen in Brian Fallon's acoustic performances or songs like 'Blue Jeans And White T-Shirts') you'll love this. It's a sound that's quite difficult to describe and it varies throughout the album but it's a wonderful mix of guitars, organs, and fantastic lyrics. One of the best albums of the year.
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