CD Fortune [The Mendoza Line] [032862015823] (CD 250188),
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Fortune [The Mendoza Line] [032862015823]

  • 1. Fellow Travelers
    2. Faithful Brothers (Scourge of the Land)
    3. Before I Hit the Wall
    4. It's a Long Line (But It Moves Quickly)
    5. Let's Not Talk About It
    6. Architect's Eye, An
    7. Metro Pictures
    8. They Never Bat an Eye
    9. Tiny Motions
    10. Flat Feet and Western Style
    11. Road to Insolvency
    12. Will You Be Here Tomorrow?
    13. Throw It in the Fire
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 158

  • Credits
    ProducerRay Ketchem; Ray Ketchem
    EngineerChris Zane; Alex Lyon; Tyler Mallory; Billy Pavone

    The Mendoza Line: Peter Hoffman, Timothy Bracy, Paul Deppler, Sean Fogarty, Shannon Mary McArdle, John Troutman.
    Personnel: Philip McArdle (guitar); Miss Darlene (violin); Carlos Orozco, Michael Daly (piano); Ray Ketchem (organ, synthesizer, percussion); Renee LoBue, Sterling Heights Singers (background vocals).
    Additional personnel: Bob Hoffnar (pedal steel guitar); Ray Ketchem, Michael Daly.
    Liner Note Author: Paul Deppler.
    Recording information: Gigantic Studios, New York, NY (05/2003-09/2003); Sashacasa (05/2003-09/2003); The Bubble, Austin, TX (05/2003-09/2003); Womb (05/2003-09/2003).
    Author: Scott McCaughey.
    The Mendoza Line has been steadily refining its brand of intimate, emotional indie rock over its last several albums. FORTUNE bears traces of both the band's rootsier influences and the ragged, rock-oriented sound of its 1997 debut. There are examples of Dylan-esque folk ("Fellow Travelers"), country ("Faithful Brothers [Scourge of the Land]"), classic rock ("An Architect's Eye"), and the confessional singer-songwriter tradition ("Let's Not Talk About It").
    But the Mendoza Line is not a mere throwback, and the intelligent sensitivity that characterizes the songwriting is channeled through a tension in the group's sound. The organic stylistic hodge-podge, narrative, literate lyrics, and male-female vocal tradeoffs, keep the record from slipping into tepid folk-rock. Additionally, "Before I Hit the Wall" conveys a youthful combination of exuberance and ennui with its full-tilt energy, pop hooks, and lyrics about existential confusion, and "It's a Long Line ("But It Moves Quickly)" plays like roots rock meeting new wave. FORTUNE finds the Mendoza Line building a reputation as honest, expressive songwriters, yet managing to keep its sound fresh, lively, and appealing.

  • Critic Reviews
    Spin (p.117) - "[L]et its chiming, folk-rock beauty wash over you like a can of cool Pabst at last call....Most of FORTUNE's tunes revolve around love and politics, which McArdle nails with a combination of wit, cynicism and sorrow."
    Magnet (p.118) - "[T]hink of it as a relaxed, cross-country drive with the attendant diversity of sights, sounds and cultures."
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