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Review: Steve Earle-The Low Highway

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GUEST,Lavengro 15 Apr 13 - 11:15 AM
GUEST, Paul Slade 15 Apr 13 - 12:21 PM
GUEST,Lavengro 15 Apr 13 - 02:07 PM
GUEST,Lavengro 15 Apr 13 - 02:11 PM
GUEST, Paul Slade 15 Apr 13 - 02:47 PM
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Subject: Review: Steve Earle-The Low Highway
From: GUEST,Lavengro
Date: 15 Apr 13 - 11:15 AM

You know what? Every album this guy puts out I think to myself "Well there's no way this will be as good as his last one", and every time it is. I know that there are those who have never forgiven him for growing up and getting past "Guitar Town", but quite frankly I think that is their loss. The way his lyrics have matured with the man I think is far more seemly than some of his slightly older and better known blue collar millionaires banging on about their teenage angst!

There is some quite quirky jazz influenced stuff on here and more than one nod to New Orleans on a few songs. The one weak track to me is the one with the best title-Warren Hellman's Banjo-. Not 100% sure why it dosn't work as his other recentish banjo outing Oxycontin Blues is a great track. To me the stand out tracks on an overall brilliant CD are the title track The Low Highway, Burnin' It Down and Remember Me. Got a bit teary listening to that last one, powerful stuff.

Eleanor Whitmore's fiddle playing on this album is so well judged (under the old adage of "It's just as important what you don't play, as what you do") that it blew me away on the first listening. Kelley Looney does what we have come to expect solid and original in equal measure without letting his ego bust through; understated brilliance; of course the other Dukes and Duchesses are carved from the same log ability wise and playing like a band member not a show pony which is what makes it all work. Great stuff, can't wait to see it all live.


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Subject: RE: Review: Steve Earle-The Low Highway
From: GUEST, Paul Slade
Date: 15 Apr 13 - 12:21 PM

Yes, Steve Earle is one of those guys who seems incapable of making a bad album. Even on my least favourite of his albums, he beats most songwriters on the best day they ever had.

My copy of the new CD's not arrived yet, but I'm looking forward to hearing it very much. The New Orleans strand you mention that's emerged in his songs lately presumably springs from his involvement as an actor in David Simon's series Treme.

Earle's books are worth getting hold of too - one novel and one collection of short stories so far. The settings and characters are very much like those he uses in his songs, they've got a real ring of truth about them and his prose is very fluid. I hope I'll get a chance to see his seldom-performed play Karla on stage one day too.


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Subject: RE: Review: Steve Earle-The Low Highway
From: GUEST,Lavengro
Date: 15 Apr 13 - 02:07 PM

@Paul Slade

Yeah, quite interesing reading his prose version of Taneytown in Doghouse Blues too. Don't know where you are based Paul, but man his books are overpriced in the UK!


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Subject: RE: Review: Steve Earle-The Low Highway
From: GUEST,Lavengro
Date: 15 Apr 13 - 02:11 PM

Meant Doghouse Roses. My daughter is playing Seasick Steve in the next room. Just shows how easily I'm influenced!


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Subject: RE: Review: Steve Earle-The Low Highway
From: GUEST, Paul Slade
Date: 15 Apr 13 - 02:47 PM

I'm in London, but I must have bought my copy of Doghouse Roses in the States, as the back cover has a price of $12 on it. That's the paperback, which weighs in at 207 pages. The novel, I'll Never Get Out of This World Alive, was a London purchase, again in paperback, and that one cost me £12.99 (about $19.87) for 243 pages.

Looking at Amazon, I see the UK site has the DR paperback at £8.09 (about $12.37) and the INGOOTWA paperback at £6.29 ($9.62). The same editions on Amazon US are $11.16 and $5.58 respectively - which makes the novel exactly half the price of the short stories there.

Money well spent wherever you buy them, I'd say, but it doesn't seem to make a hell of a lot of sense, does it?

(Why yes, I was looking for some displacement activity. Why do you ask?)


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