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Taking the Long Way

Taking the Long Way

4.4 65
by Dixie Chicks

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Bitter, defiant, resilient, vulnerable, confused -- the Dixie Chicks have emerged from their own Bush maelstrom with body and soul intact, if dented. At least five songs (possibly more, depending on interpretation) on this Rick Rubin-produced disc address the fury that descended upon the group when Natalie Maines mentioned, on the eve of


Bitter, defiant, resilient, vulnerable, confused -- the Dixie Chicks have emerged from their own Bush maelstrom with body and soul intact, if dented. At least five songs (possibly more, depending on interpretation) on this Rick Rubin-produced disc address the fury that descended upon the group when Natalie Maines mentioned, on the eve of the U.S. offensive in Iraq, that she was ashamed that the president was from her native Texas; and the music fueling these songs is appropriately angry, edgy, and driving. Rubin dresses up the arrangements with orchestral surges from the Beatles' stylebook, replete with ethereal, Enya-like chanting background voices and a Spectorian wall of electric and acoustic guitars, banjos, fiddles, and pianos. Maines, meanwhile, reasserts herself as one of the great vocalists of her time, bringing it all home with committed, deeply emotional leads that flaunt her ease with styles ranging from country-rock to contemporary rock balladry to southern soul, whether she's belting out a tear-stained howl in "Voice Inside My Head" or tenderly caressing a sensitive lyric of love and devotion, as on "Lullaby." The songs are uniformly affecting, be they full of fury (the in-your-face "Not Ready to Make Nice") or deeply felt romantic anguish (the atmospheric, late-era Beatles-like "Silent House"), and are all originals, with co-writing help from the likes of Neil Finn, Sheryl Crow (the winsome reflection "Favorite Year"), Heartbreaker Mike Campbell, the Jayhawks' Gary Louris, Semisonic's Dan Wilson, and, best of all, Keb' Mo', who assists in a terrific slice of laid-back southern gospel soul, "I Hope," which closes the album on a positive, upbeat note. For all the hoopla about the Chicks leaving country, Taking the Long Way sounds like a natural progression, not a forced retreat. It's a complete triumph.

Editorial Reviews

Rolling Stone - Barry Walters
Their seventh studio album embraces the depth and fury of classic rock while remaining true to the trio's Texas roots.... If you've dismissed the Chicks or need a new reason to love them, the epic, howling longing of "Voice Inside My Head" will blow your expectations.
St. Louis Post-Dispatch - Kevin Johnson
[Grade: A] An older, wiser and more glam [Dixie Chicks] burst free of country confines on "Taking the Long Way".... A career album that shows adversity doesn't turn these women into wimps.

Product Details

Release Date:


Album Credits

Performance Credits

Dixie Chicks   Primary Artist
Marvin Etzioni   Mandolin
Bonnie Raitt   Background Vocals
Steve Kujala   Flute
Benmont Tench   Piano,Harmonium,Harpsichord,Hammond Organ,farfisa organ,Wurlitzer,Tack Piano
Lenny Castro   Percussion
Larry Corbett   Strings
Joel Derouin   Strings
Richard Dodd   Cello
Larry Knechtel   Piano,Hammond Organ,Wurlitzer
Gary Louris   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar,Background Vocals,Guitar (12 String Electric)
Lloyd Maines   Mandolin,Pedal Steel Guitar
Lon Price   Tenor Saxophone
Brad Warnaar   French Horn
Dan Wilson   Acoustic Guitar,Bass,Piano,Electric Guitar,Background Vocals,Guitar (12 String Electric)
Smokey Hormel   Acoustic Guitar,Electric Guitar
Jonny Polonsky   Acoustic Guitar,Bass,Piano,Lap Steel Guitar
Natalie Maines   Vocals,Background Vocals,Omnichord
Emily Robison   Acoustic Guitar,Banjo,Accordion,Electric Guitar,Sitar,Background Vocals,Papoose
Brian Swartz   Trumpet
Chris Testa   Xylophone,Orchestral Chimes
Andrew Duckles   Strings
Martie Maguire   Mandolin,Strings,Violin,Viola,Background Vocals
Gerardo Hilera   Strings
Terry Landry   Alto Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone
Mario de León   Strings
Matthew Funes   Strings

Technical Credits

Mike Campbell   Composer
Sheryl Crow   Composer
Steve Berlin   Horn Arrangements
Neil Finn   Composer
Gary Louris   Composer
Linda Perry   Composer
Rick Rubin   Producer,Audio Production
Jim Scott   Engineer
Dan Wilson   Composer
Keb' Mo'   Composer
Suzie Katayama   String Contractor
Greg Fidelman   Engineer
Kevin Reagan   Art Direction
Natalie Maines   Composer
John Silva   Engineer
Emily Robison   Composer
Brian Swartz   Horn Arrangements
Pete Yorn   Composer
Chris Testa   Engineer
Martie Maguire   Composer,String Arrangements

Customer Reviews

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Taking the Long Way 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 65 reviews.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i am so sick of people using something as simple as this to make political statements. honestly, do you have nothing better to do with your time than look around for ways to insult this women? you're making yourself look bad, not them. It's just music! I personally think its great music and that is what should be judged on these reviews. It is an amazing CD. The lyrics are amazing, and it displays writing talent, vocal talent, and instrumental talent. Great job ladies!
April_Hake More than 1 year ago
This album is awesome! I blare 'Not Ready to Make Nice' because these words are EXACTLY how I feel!

'Silent House' as to the sense in was written, my grandmother has Alzehimer's and I know that is the dedication behind the song!

They are truly talented and write & sing wonderful songs!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have never been much of a 'Dixie Chick' fan, but I was channel surfing one night, and I came upon the country video channel and the DC's were playing a concert on-stage. I was captivated by their style, and their voices. I have become a devoted fan just from that one hour of intense listening. Thank you, Dixie Chicks, you ladies are not only beautiful, but talented, strong, with great voices. Keep bringing us the wonderful music, and also keep saying what you feel and believe. This is a free country with the right to speak your mind.
Guest More than 1 year ago
You listen to this album and get a sense what they were going through. This is one of their best and I hope they keep on making more music and go back on tour.
sparksfanCM More than 1 year ago
i love the song not ready to make nice it is a really powerful song, i also love there songs cowboy take me away and wide open spaces.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
This hasn't left my cd player yet. Fantastic with nary a weak song in the bunch. Particular favorites are Not Ready to Make Nice, Lubbock or Leave It, Easy Silence and Long Way Home. Easily the best Chicks release yet.
Guest More than 1 year ago
What an awesome breakout and display of their real talent. It is inspiring to hear each song when you know their story. I liked them before ... I love them now! THANK YOU GEORGE BUSH for pushing them out of the nest! They finally having their wings ... and no country radio station can silence them because I have the CD! ... and I vote!
Guest More than 1 year ago
This album is very good! I believe the Dixie Chicks have a very unique sound that should be appreciated in a time when most music sounds the same. I especially love "Lullaby".
Guest More than 1 year ago
Absolutely amazing. A great slap in the face to all of the naysayers.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I love a band who stands by their lyrics and personal convictions. Johhny Cash, Neil Young, Bob Dylan, and the Rolling Stones gave commentary on the vast scope of turmoil in their own time. I applaud the sense of honor, poise, and grace: All three traits imbibed within the hearts of the three women who make Dixie Chicks. I am proud to call the band members "American Patriots of Country Music." Never give in to pressure Dixie Chicks.
Guest More than 1 year ago
These women are truly talented. This album is absolutely fantastic. Their response to the horrendous treatment they have received is pure perfection. I am a FIRM believer in freedom of speech and I say they are entitled to their opinion and no one has the right to tell them otherwise. I may not agree with the way they handled it, but it is their opinion and their right to say it. They did NOT ridicule or condemn the soldiers sent to Iraq, but only stated their distaste for the current president. What has made them different than the many others that have said the same thing in the past few years? Only their high-proile position in country music. And at this time, I can see a great many people and groups that feel the same way ...way more than there were when the offensive went into Iraq - I certainly hope none of them are those that condemned the Chicks back in the beginning of this war. I applaude those that choose not to blindly follow, but become more informed and want facts and proof before action is dealt. And for all those misinformed supposed "lovers of America" that decided to ban their music and publically ridicule them, they had better remember that we have that little thing called FREEDOM OF SPEECH in our country. It is a hard fought and well protected right. They have the right to use it.
Guest More than 1 year ago
i love the dixie chicks no matter what and i am going to buy thier album as soon as it comes out. i already have "wide open spaces", "Fly",and "home" and i listen to them all the time i LOVE MY CHICKS 4EVER
Guest More than 1 year ago
If ignorance is bliss, then the last two "reviewers" would have to be counted amongst the most blissful of beings. This album is certified fantastic! Every song is a winner.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I live and breathe music, and this CD by the Dixie Chicks is one of the best I have ever heard. To think that country stations have refused to play it is beyond laughable. I can do without country radio, but I can't do without my DCX!
Guest More than 1 year ago
I've always loved the Dixie Chicks! I hope everyone just forgets what they said and starts listening to their music. 'Not Ready To Make Nice' has got to be one of their greatest songs ever. The Chicks aren't afraid to express themselves at all and I really admire them for that.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one favorite CD's ever. Every song is written by the Chix, this is their most autobigraphyl CD. This CD has won many awards, including Album of the Year. They reaoly knock politics on the head with this CD. Great Job!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Guest More than 1 year ago
When I first heard Natilie Maines sing, I thought that they should let one of the other girls sing ("the pretty one" hee, hee) but soon I learned that she owns those songs, and nobody can do them better. Well, now she owns more songs and you will enjoy them as much or more. "Taking the Long Way" is an odd title for group that maintained its integrity when betrayed by radio stations and groups still looking for WMD under desks and behind curtains, but they did and their fans come out the winners. A great album and a good reason to become a fan, or a fan again if you were misled yourself.This is the short way to some good music, a bit different sound (not so Country) but the same high quality.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Dixie chicks suck
Guest More than 1 year ago
I felt like this was a group that had promise but never quite fulfilled it. With this album, they surpass it. Every song contains a beautiful melody, meaningful lyrics, and most of all an emotion(al) (maturity) that I felt was missing from their other albums it's like this is the first album where they are actually required something of (and they more than deliver on all fronts). So put away whatever misgivinsg you may have about them (if you were a country fan of theirs' that was offended), even if you don't like country music, and take a listen to a what a great album, what great music sounds like.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is one heck of an album. It has got to be their most personal and autobiographical. I love the fact that they co-wrote in each of the songs. I was going to give a breakdown but there is no point. I give each song 5 stars because they all shine. They really deserved the 5 grammy's for this album.They rule.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I have always loved the Dixie Chicks. They are 3 of the most beautiful and most talented female artists in music today. I could care less what anyone thinks or believes. I don't go to Natalie Maines or Dave Matthews for political thoughts and beliefs. I go to them for their enormous and brilliant talent. It is just sad that the overwhelming and overbearing response to her little speech in England caused these three to be outcasts for 3 years. I strongly recommend this and any album they have made. I may not agree with their views and the funny thing is their views may be deeper than that little sentence and we may agree more than we disagree, I don't care, she isn't running for office and doesn't want to run the world. She is a beautiful woman and an amazing musician. Overall it does not change the fact that these 4 Grammy Winning ladies are amazing. I hope this inspires them to keep on making beautiful music. If country music doesn't want them, the rest of us will take them and continue to love them
Guest More than 1 year ago
I loved almost every cut on this CD. I am an "almost" 60 year old boomer from New Hamphire - and not a particular fan of country music. I loved the gutsiness, the lyrics - you go girls!
Guest More than 1 year ago
i've never been so disappointed upon opening a new cd. i had hoped to find the chicks of old in this cd - the kind of music i fell in love with the first time i heard them. this album is nothing more than one long bitter rant, mostly about the backlash from their controversial political statements. if i wanted to hear bitter, there are better bands out there for it. i would not recommend this album to anyone.
Guest More than 1 year ago
this is the best album yet.... worth the wait...the passion in their voice as they sing the words they cowrote is astonishing and addictive...i am glad to see the spirit of America thriving in the Dixie Chicks!!