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Love Songs for Patriots [VINYL]

4.1 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Vinyl (13 Dec. 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: Devil in the Woods
  • ASIN: B00066FN1O
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,677,633 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
Eitzel never really went away, but he's back with a vengance. For all his excellent solo releases, this is his finest record since the last AMC album.
No one on earth can juxtapose the disheartened disdain of Patriot's Heart or Ladies and Gentlemen with the weary hopefulness of Love Is or Only Love Can Set You Free.
I only wish more people would buy their records. Otherwise, they'll split up again and it will be your fault!
If you buy this record, you won't regret it. And if you do, you don't deserve it.
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Format: Audio CD
I missed out on AMC the first time around but they were one of those groups whose name cropped up as being worthwhile (like The Replacements, who are equally worthy). I was too busy listening to Husker Du, The Fall , Rain Parade, Sonic Youth etc. - anyway, they passed me by but they were probably on a wish list somewhere if only I had the time/money. My interest was piqued about 5 years ago by an article about Mark Eitzel & I have since listened to all AMC & most of Marks' albums. Glad to say that this band & this songwriter are revered for all the right reasons (ie. they are bloody good !!!). So, fortunately for me, I have only had to wait 5 years for this new album from the reformed band.
When I heard they were reforming there were none of those 'cash in, doing it for the money' thoughts as the band could hardly manage to survive the first time around (even though they were held in very high respect)& guitarist Vudi apparently needed a lot of persuading to give up his day job as a bus driver because it was a steady, reliable job (& making music isn't). Thank God he did.
Love Songs for Patriots is perhaps a typical AMC album as on initial listens there are no stand out tracks. Listening to the whole album from beginning to end is no great hardship, though. They always seem to have a consistency throughout their albums & it takes time for favourites to appear. After a couple of days Only Love Can Set You Free, Home & Myopic Books are highlights but others are sure to standout with time. Hard to say where this stands alongside greats like Everclear, California & Mercury, yet, but it definitely doesn't dissapoint & if you've had to wait 10 years congratulations, the wait was worthwhile.
Now, if only they would play live in Manchester !!!!
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Format: Audio CD
In the early 1990s, at the peak of their powers, American Music Club were one of the most critically revered groups. Most (in)famous is Andrew Smith's Melody Maker review reproduced on the back of the solo live "Songs of Love". Smith's remarks (that Mark Eitzel had more soul in his little finger than the entire Motown back catalogue and that, if he had to make a choice between the next AMC album, and the entire history of recorded music he would choose the former) were overblown but you knew where he was coming from.
In 1993's "Mercury", for many, including me, the group's pinnacle, Eitzel's voice, lyrics and songwriting were matched by an enticing variety of instruments and effects, masterminded by producer Mitchell Froom and iconoclastic guitarist Vudi. If such experimentation in textures and sound was not quite on the level of Talk Talk's late masterpieces, it was reminiscent of Radiohead at times and elevated AMC above the rank and file of alt-country.
And yet, and yet...While a 90 minute collection of AMC's finest moments would be as good a listening experience as any, I always thought the band never fulfilled their promise. "Everclear" had at least 5 bona fide classics but was marred by a couple of songs "Rise" and "Crabwalk" which seemed overblown or contrived and marred the feel and sequence of the album. 2 albums later, when the group was poised for overdue commercial success, they released their least successful album, at least until that time, in "San Francisco" which was at least 4 songs too long and, for all the gorgeousness of a number of the tracks, smacked of an expectant record label breathing down the band's necks or self-expectation getting the better of them.
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By Peter Uys HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on 16 Feb. 2005
Format: Audio CD
On Love Songs for Patriots, American Music Club's mood is as dark as ever, but infused with the hope of redemption. Filled with yearning and distorted dreams delivered in the most beautifully poetic lyrics, the first three tracks Ladies and Gentleman, Another Morning and Patriot's Heart set the lugubrious but defiant tone for this masterpiece.
The drinking song Ladies and Gentleman is achingly moving in its juxtaposition of the pain of living with either truth or with lies. Patriot's Heart, about a male stripper, is a masterpiece of conflicting emotions, cynicism blended with compassion and understanding. Wow, this approach is something else, so unique and stirring.
There are also gentle and tender moments like Another Morning, an inspiring song about shaking off bitterness and depression, framed in a lovely melody and pop orchestration. Another highlight, and one with a sprinkling of humour, is the gentle ballad Myopic Books. The delicate track Love Is reminds me of their gem of a song Firefly from an earlier album, whilst Only Love Can Set You Free is an appealing love song.
The last two tracks, Song of the Rats Leaving the Sinking Ship and The Devil Needs You, are quite ambiguous and may be interpreted on both a personal and universal level. The latter is over 7 minutes long and combines a powerful drum pattern with delirious keyboards and horns to conclude the album on a high note.
As with the rest of their oeuvre, Love Songs For Patriots is not easy listening for everybody, but if you love the kind of redemptive sadness often found in the work of artists like Nick Drake, Leonard Cohen, Richard Thompson, Peter Murphy, Swans, Michael Gira's Angels Of Light, Nick Cave, Emmylou Harris or Jane Siberry, you will love this welcome return by American Music Club.
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