No Depression: What It Sounds Like, Vol. 1

No Depression: What It Sounds Like, Vol. 1

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The publishers of the alternative country magazine No Depression offer a thumbnail overview of the fertile subgenre on this compilation. The disc begins by tipping its proverbial hat to two forefathers, with Johnny Cash rendering a bristling version of Willie Nelson's "Time of the Preacher," backed by a host of Seattle grungeSee more details below

Overview

The publishers of the alternative country magazine No Depression offer a thumbnail overview of the fertile subgenre on this compilation. The disc begins by tipping its proverbial hat to two forefathers, with Johnny Cash rendering a bristling version of Willie Nelson's "Time of the Preacher," backed by a host of Seattle grunge rockers, and ends with the Carter Family's "No Depression," the zine's namesake song. In between are many individual spins on the traditional country that lies at the roots of the sound, such as Allison Moorer's dark, foreboding ballad "Is Heaven Good Enough for You"; the late Doug Sahm's western swing–infused "Cowboy Peyton Place"; and Buddy Miller's stark, sarcastic indictment of a faithless significant other, "Does My Ring Burn Your Finger." Kasey Chambers reminds us why hers remains the most penetrating voice of her generation on the pulsating country rocker "Dam" (previously available only on an Australian EP). And while he may have moved on to a more rock-centric sound of late, Ryan Adams turns up with his old band Whiskeytown on "Faithless Street," a template for the angst-ridden, languorous style of country common to the early alternative bands. At the other end of the scale is Hayseed, who stay firmly rooted in rustic tradition on the old-time hymn "Farther Along," featuring Emmylou Harris's keening harmonies. As a sampler, this disc leaves one wanting more -- and that's a good thing. Maybe that's why they called it Vol. 1.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Ronnie D. Lankford
The release of No Depression: What It Sounds Like (Vol. 1) has an air of the Smithsonian Institute about it, suggesting that the 14-year-old genre can now be safely displayed for popular consumption. Luckily, however, the songs never sound like museum pieces. With the help of No Depression's -- the periodical -- editors Grant Alden and Peter Blackstock, Dualtone has gathered 13 tracks to help explain the most perplexing of musical questions: just what the heck does no depression sound like? The collection kicks off with bad boy Johnny Cash merging his country roots with Seattle grunge on Willie Nelson's "The Time of the Preacher." Another alternative country icon, Emmylou Harris, lends vocal support to Hayseed's rustic take of "Farther Along," creating a vocal mix as rough and ready as anything the Carter Family ever put on a breakable 78 rpm record. In-between, relative newcomers like Allison Moorer and Kevin Gordon/Lucinda Williams fashion a contemporary style with singer/songwriter roots, while Whiskeytown and Robbie Fulks/Kelly Willis sound like they've stepped out of a honky tonk circa 1951. Such disparate strands of rock, old-time, and contemporary folk have always made no depression something like the potpourri of genres, custom-made for everything that doesn't fit anywhere else. In this fashion, the music's audience seems to be made up of classic rock fans stuck in the early '70s and country fans who lean toward Hank Williams and Waylon Jennings. No Depression: What It Sounds Like is a solid collection for the initiate or longtime fan, and succeeds because it doesn't try to cram this elusive genre into a tidy category.

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Product Details

Release Date:
03/09/2004
Label:
Dualtone Music Group
UPC:
0803020115323
catalogNumber:
1153

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Johnny Cash   Acoustic Guitar,Vocals
Kelly Willis   Vocals
Sean Kinney   Drums
Marty Muse   Steel Guitar
Krist Novoselic   Bass
Kim Thayil   Electric Guitar
Brad Fordham   Bass Guitar
Lisa Pankratz   Drums
Robbie Fulks   Acoustic Guitar,Vocal Ad-Libs
Robbie Gjersoe   Electric Guitar

Technical Credits

Johnny Cash   Producer
Willie Nelson   Composer
Mickey Newbury   Composer
Elvis Presley   Composer
Doug Sahm   Composer
Chris Stamey   Producer
Julie Miller   Composer
Steve Albini   Engineer
A.P. Carter   Composer
Alejandro Escovedo   Composer
Kenny Greenberg   Producer
Randall Hage Jamail   Producer
Colin Linden   Composer
Buddy Miller   Composer
Bruce Robison   Engineer
Joel Trueblood   Composer
Whiskeytown   Producer
John Dunleavy   Engineer
Robbie Fulks   Composer
Neko Case   Composer
John Ramberg   Composer
Joe Hayden   Engineer
Matthew Ryan   Composer
Scott Betts   Composer
Kevin Gordon   Composer
Brian Connelly   Composer
Phil Wandscher   Composer
Ryan Adams   Composer
Hayseed   Arranger
Allison Moorer   Composer
Caitlin Cary   Composer
Grant Alden   Executive Producer
Traditional   Composer
Peter Blackstock   Executive Producer
Doyle Lee Primm   Composer
Kyla Fairchild   Executive Producer

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