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4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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Showing 1-6 of 6 reviews(4 star). Show all reviews
on December 6, 2002
Jim White, no relation, is as an eccentric, innovative, and refreshing new artist as we've heard in a while. He, along with a small contigent of talented producers, appears to have invented a new musical hybrid-- a combination of 'country' and so-called 'trip-hop' (itself a hybrid), which we shall hereby dub 'countryp-hop'(unless someone has beaten us to it or found a better name). White writes songs that bear a melodic resemblance to country music. Then he bends them lyrically and sonically into beautifully warped gems. To get what we mean, you need only to listen to his one cover. It is a version of "King of the Road", a road where Roger Miller collides with Tom Waits. Although this no longer makes it Top Ten material, it is every bit as catchy and much more provocative than Miller's original. The instruments employed on the album-- kalimba, melodium, celeste, toy flute, sitar, etc--are not the usual array for country music. And when the 'usual' are used--dobro, banjo, mandolin, etc--it is in a totally new and imaginative way. Now some of this is just a tad too strange for these ears to 'get', but we may just keep hitting "repeat" until we do.
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on May 15, 2001
HANDCUFFED to a fence in Mississippi is not a usual place to begin an album. But then the last thing Jim White could be described is run of the mill. A former New York cab driver turned singer, his life fell apart after the release of his totally distinctive "One Eyed Jesus" debut. Happily now back on track, the string of producer credits hint that this was a tough album to make.
For the uninitiated, White is a very alternative country performer, combining modern effects with dark tales of Southern madness and religion. Some of the material here is heaven sent. For example White invests Corvair, a lullaby for a disused car, with all the sadness in the world. At his best, White's lyrics are miniature short stories to rival those of Southern writer Flannery O'Connor.
It does lose its way in the middle, but if you like adventurous roots music, you really should search this out.
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on August 19, 2001
In some of his novels, William Gibson has characters, not particularly cultured or sophisticated, who find themselves in situations involving technology and forces with which they are not prepared. Somebody named Jim White may exist contemporaneously in the same universe as me; he may have once been a taxi driver; he may get played on the radio; a couple of the tracks on this CD may have been produced by Morcheeba, which is a British band consisting of two brothers and a singer. All of this is too limiting.
I prefer to approach this disk as a work of science fiction � the diary of one of Gibson�s products of white trash inbreeding encountering situations for which he is unprepared. This enlarges the zone of empathy and dulls one�s instinct to criticize the indulgent. As a postcard from some alternative universe it works.
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on June 7, 2001
i guess so?...unless it hollers. Congratulations to Mr. White on his LATE NIGHT appearance this Tuesday, June 12.
Although I can play "No Such Place" more times than the latest Grandaddy or Whiskeytown, I feel Jim's CD is playing hard to get. Tracks like "Corvair," "Seldom (Christmas Day)," "10 Miles to go...," "Handcuffed to a Fence in MS," and "The Wound that Never Heals" are the rouge, the middle part of the album are uneven, flabby bits. Mr. White, you need to work out! Otherwise you'll only have baby biceps with rough-material-enough-for-brilliant-EPs-only. Get STUDIOus, kid.
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on April 12, 2001
I like it a lot. It reminds me of Morphine, though I cannot say Jim White sounds like Morphine - it's just the closest I can come to analogy here. What I love about this music is how different it is from the usual mainstream sound. If you like Morphine, I am certain you will like this group too (and vice versa). It also reminds me of the Play album by Moby. In my comparison, please don't get the idea that Jim White's sound is a copy or imitation of these or any another group, as it really isn't. It's an original sound and style whose time has come. Almost five stars, almost!!!
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on June 16, 2001
I heard "Handcuffed..." on the radio the other day & was alternating between dying laughing, & trying to figure the exact lyrics out while in traffic. I'm living in WA state & from TX so it felt a lot like home, redneck & surreal... The DJ said it was "hick-hop" music...if this album is all like this, it's gonna feel like Jeff Foxworthy meets Frank Zappa...
I LOVE it!!!
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