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on 1 March 2002
This is the best alt.country, Americana or whatever-it's-called-this-week album. Yes, even better than "Hollywood Town Hall" and "Being There". And "Nixon".
If you like a little country with your rock, and a bit of a pop sensibility, this is for you. Ryan Adams is a great songwriter, and I think this is his best collection. There are cracking honky-tonkin' tunes like "Excuse Me While I Break My Own Heart", scorching rockers like "Turn Around" and "Waiting To Derail", and country-pop like the sublime "16 Days". There is also "Houses On The Hill", which is a beautiful, haunting song about wasted (in both senses) lives. A lovely, gentle thing, with a dark heart. The peach, however, has to be "Dancing With The Women At The Bar", an ambivalent and melancholy ode to the siren call of wine, women and song. Terrific stuff.
It's all wonderfully arranged, and the rock and country elements blend very well. It's a more polished item than its predecessor "Faithless Street" (also well worth a listen), but much more country, not to mention varied, than Ryan Adams' recent "Gold" album.
If you like Wilco, the Olson-era Jayhawks, Los Lobos, the Burritos, or even the sountracks to "O Brother Where Art Thou?" and "Down From The Mountain", a wee dram of Whiskeytown may be very much to your taste.
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on 11 August 2007
I am moved to write my first ever Amazon review by the fact that this CD 'only' gets 4 and a half stars. It is five star, simply, categorically and definitely; in fact, it is one of the - I don't know, 20 or 30 - greatest rock (in its broadest sense) recordings ever made. And I use the word 'rock' carefully; it has great tunes, with a strong rock sensibility, despite country instrumentation at times, and lyrics that range far wider than most modern artists dare. Probably the best use of the word 'artefact' in a rock song?
Every song is strong, and the whole CD works as a whole - it is best listened to as a whole, not on 'shuffle'. It rocks, it is joyful, it is sad, it stirs the emotions - what more could you want? Despite the brilliance of 'Heartbreaker' , it remains Ryan Adams best ever work, and it will grow in stature through the years. If you like the Stones, the Clash, Johnny Cash, REM, ....oh what the h**l, basically if you like great music, just buy it.
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on 27 February 2002
This is undoubtably one of the best collections of songs ever commited to any medium. It is an album that makes you want to laugh, cry, love and die.
Considered by many as Whiskeytown's break through album it is their second album.
The lyrics, mainly written by Ryan Adams, but with co writing credits on the album going to various other members of the band, are thoughtful in the extreme. The tales of heartbreak told in these songs leaves the listener bewildered that something so beautiful can come out of something so evidently painful.
The music itself is distinctly country in origin, owing great inspiration to the likes of Gram Parsons, but it never really goes too far that way, always reigning itself in with a rockier sound.
Truely an album that all self repecting fans of the so-called emerging alt-country scene should own.
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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 29 December 2013
One of those albums that was destined to be a classic from the get go.
Kicking off with the mellow Inn Town leading to the very country Excuse Me which will make you wish you were brave enough to line dance.Yesterdays News is a punching pop song which is followed by one of the many highlight tracks...16 Days.A simple tune which you will have the words to in your head after 2/3 plays and then will sing along to thereafter.Some great guitar work also.Everything I Do is a beautiful song interspersed with some nice rough? Guitar playing that plays off against the lyrics.House On The Hill is a short simple sumptuous song (one of my faves as it happens), which wouldn't go amiss on a Steve Earle album.Turn Around is a pop song which you could easily picture REM performing. Dancing With The Women is probably THE album highlight, mystical and poignant...haunting in its simplicity.Waiting To Derail is one of the more rockier tracks on the album.Avenues is a simple acoustic affair, again very Steve Earle, but uniquely Adams.Losering and Somebody Remembered The Rose are nicely paired ballads while Not At Home is a very haunting eerily disquieting track regarding lost love.There are not many albums that I buy 2 formats of on cd AND Vinyl.But this is just one of those.The vinyl is thick and on 2 vinyls with side 4 incl.Live in the studio performances.A single sleeve houses both vinyls which in turn have picture inner sleeves but no lyrics.Just buy it.
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on 15 October 2012
Very very very very good. Every track on this album is a gem and will leave you wanting more - this hasnt been out of my car since i bought it and it's driving the rest of the family mad.
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on 7 March 2014
I like this record, Ryan Adams is a gifted songwriter that has always lacked consistency but for my money at least this is his best (I can hear the howls of protests from fans of Gild & Heartbreaker ringing in my ears already) !
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on 18 April 2014
surreal images collide with countrified visions of despair and desperation but looking up at the stars in the sky for love
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on 30 December 2014
Classic alt-country song writing. Invented by Gram Parsons. Perfected by Ryan Adams.
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on 5 June 2016
Bought for my son. He loves it so 5 stars it is.
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on 8 October 2015
Brilliant
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