CD Broken Hearts & Dirty Windows: Songs of John Prine [Digipak] (CD 6602933),
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Broken Hearts & Dirty Windows: Songs of John Prine [Digipak]
1. Bruised Orange (Chain of Sorrow) - Justin Vernon
2. Wedding Day in Funeralville - Conor Oberst and the Mystic Valley Band
3. All the Best
4. Mexican Home - Josh Ritter
5. Six O'Clock News
6. Far from Me - Justin Townes Earle
7. Spanish Pipedream
8. Angel from Montgomery
9. Late John Garfield Blues, The
10. Daddy's Little Pumpkin
11. Unwed Fathers - Deer Tick
12. Let's Talk Dirty in Hawaiian - Those Darlins
Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): CDOBR042
Josh Talley (Compilation)
Tributee: John Prine.
Liner Note Author: Justin Vernon.
Recording information: Beech House Recording Studio, Nashville, TN; Chase Park Transduction, Athens, GA; Electromagnetic Radiation Recorders, Winston-Salem, NC; Fall Creek, WI; Great North Sound Society, Parsonfield, ME; House Of David Studios, Nashville, TN; Paradox Productions, Murfreesboro, TN; Providence, RI; Sonic Ranch, Tornillo, TX; The Cowboy Arms Hotel & Recording Spa, Nashville, TN; The Funeral HOme, Louisville, KY; The Garfield House, San Diego, CA.
What's instantly noticeable and commendable about this tribute to the songwriting of John Prine is that none of the artists chosen to do the honors are contemporaries of the author. Prine, in his early sixties at the time of the album's release, had been a fixture on the singer/songwriter scene since the early '70s, long before most (any?) of the participants were even born. That's a smart move by the compilers: by removing the context in which these songs were first written and recorded, the younger artists were free to reinterpret them on their own merits. Issued simultaneously with Prine's own In Person & on Stage live album, Broken Hearts & Dirty Windows completes a retrospective picture of Prine's accomplishments to the date of this release. Some of the performers choose from among Prine's better-known material, while others dig deeper into the catalog. Old Crow Medicine Show's take on "Angel from Montgomery" is reminiscent of the early music of the Band, old-timey yet contemporary too. The album opens with Justin Vernon of Bon Iver, who brings a faraway gospel feel to "Bruised Orange (Chain of Sorrow)," the title track of a 1978 Prine album, and it closes with Those Darlins' surfy take on one of Prine's more humorous efforts, "Let's Talk Dirty in Hawaiian." Some of the most impressive interpretations veer from Prine's arrangements: Conor Oberst and the Mystic Valley Band turn up the indie rock volume on "Wedding Day in Funeralville" and Drive-By Truckers give a bar band rawness to "Daddy's Little Pumpkin." Justin Townes Earle's "Far from Me" is low-key and imbued with an easygoing rural quality, My Morning Jacket turn "All the Best" into an alt-country singalong, and Deer Tick (featuring Liz Isenberg) are reminiscent of Gram Parsons and Emmylou Harris' duets with their front-porch "Unwed Fathers." ~ Jeff Tamarkin
Rolling Stone (p.80) - "The tunes are personalized with minor mutations, capturing the sort of signature life-affirming darkness epitomized by a couplet from 'Six O'Clock News'..."
Mojo (Publisher) (p.95) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "Conor Oberst injects indie rock into 'Wedding Day In Funeralville,' but all of it is done with a loving, humble grace."
Paste (magazine) - "At last, the tribute he deserves. The songs of dirt-road troubador John Prine are malleable -- simple, elegiac tales of people living out simple lives."
Pitchfork (Website) - "Abandoning the ethereal folk of Bon Iver, Justin Vernon invests 'Bruised Orange (Chain of Sorrow)' with an earthy gravity, packing in a novel's worth of detail in just four minutes."
Record Collector (magazine) (p.89) - 3 stars out of 5 -- "Respectful covers abound...with the ever-improving Justin Townes 'Son Of Steve' Earle especially affecting on 'Far From Me'..."
Uncut (magazine) (p.92) - 4 stars out of 5 -- "[A] stirring salute to the unflashy genius of John Prine."
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Oh Boy Records CDOBR042
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