The Slash Recordings

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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
More than two decades ago, the Blasters formed to spread the gospel of roots music -- and were so successful at doing so that they're now considered roots-rock touchstones in their own right. This two-disc, 52-song collection captures all the elements that made the Blasters such a blast, from the deceptively stellar musicianship to the full-on party vibe. The L.A.-bred band could walk the walk rockabilly style but proved equally fluent in languages as diverse as classic soul, roadhouse blues, and high-lonesome country. Testament showcases all of the above, spilling over as it does with favorites such as "Marie Marie," "Border Radio," and the song that would become the ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David Sprague
More than two decades ago, the Blasters formed to spread the gospel of roots music -- and were so successful at doing so that they're now considered roots-rock touchstones in their own right. This two-disc, 52-song collection captures all the elements that made the Blasters such a blast, from the deceptively stellar musicianship to the full-on party vibe. The L.A.-bred band could walk the walk rockabilly style but proved equally fluent in languages as diverse as classic soul, roadhouse blues, and high-lonesome country. Testament showcases all of the above, spilling over as it does with favorites such as "Marie Marie," "Border Radio," and the song that would become the Blasters' calling card, "American Music." Phil and Dave Alvin, abetted by pals such as Los Lobos comrade Steve Berlin on sax and Gene Taylor tickling the ivories, could belt out modern-day workingman's anthems like "Common Man" and "Boomtown." Then, quick as a wink, they could bop into purely joyful throw-downs like Jerry Lee Lewis's "High School Confidential" or "Roll 'em Pete" both captured live on this set. Besides the band's complete work for the Slash label, Testament is also peppered with previously unreleased tracks, including rip-roaring versions of "Crazy Baby" and "Got Love if You Want It" and a 1985 live recording of Jimmy Reed's "Take Out Some Insurance." The latter will catch the ears of fans, since it's the first-ever official release to feature the Alvin brothers dueting sans band. Midway through Disc 1, the Blasters proclaim that "Rock and Roll Will Stand." Listening to Testament, it's hard to argue the point.
All Music Guide - Mark Deming
"We got the Louisiana boogie and the Delta blues/We got country swing and rockabilly, too/We got jazz, country western, and Chicago blues/It's the greatest music that you ever knew." Dave Alvin was writing about "American Music" in his song of the same name when he penned those lines, but while he would never be quite so arrogant as to say so himself, he could have been talking about his band, the Blasters, who used the song as the title track of their first album. While often lumped in with the L.A. rockabilly scene that rose up in the wake of punk rock, from the start the Blasters displayed a wide-ranging musical diversity that set them far apart from, say, Levi and the Rockats. The Blasters were a supremely tight and tasteful band with enough fire, smarts, and passion for two or three groups. Phil Alvin was a singer who knew how to communicate the grand gesture while still touching the small details; his brother, Dave Alvin, was a peerless songwriter who could honor the artists who influenced him while finding a distinct and memorable voice of his own (he could play a mean guitar to boot), and John Bazz and Bill Bateman were a strong and swinging rhythm section. The Blasters cut two superb albums for Slash Records that raised the bar for the entire 1980s and '90s roots rock movement, 1981's The Blasters and 1983's Non Fiction, and a great live EP, 1982's Over There: Live at the Venue, London. The group's third and final set for Slash, 1985's Hard Line, was an ambitious attempt to modernize the group's sound in hopes of finding a place on radio, which was only partially successful, though it still contains a number of great songs, and even the weaker numbers would raise the batting average for most other bands. The Blasters left behind a remarkable body of work, and Testament: The Complete Slash Recordings finally makes all of it available on CD for the first time. The set contains The Blasters, Non Fiction, Over There, and Hard Line in their entirety, along with strong outtakes from the Non Fiction and Hard Line sessions ("Kathleen" might have been the finest song on the final album had it made the cut), four additional performances from the show recorded for Over There, two tunes the band recorded for the movie Streets of Fire, and a noisy but inspired duo performance by Dave and Phil on Jimmy Reed's "Take out Some Insurance" at a New York club gig. With Testament: The Complete Slash Recordings and Hightone's reissue of American Music (the group's rough-and-ready debut album, cut for Rollin' Rock Records in 1980), the Blasters' entire catalog is in print for the first time, and anyone who digs blues, rockabilly, R&B, country, or pretty much any tributary of American postwar roots music will have a stompin' good time with this set; rarely has a crash course in music history been this much fun.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 3/5/2002
  • Label: Rhino
  • UPC: 081227834524
  • Catalog Number: 78345

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Marie Marie (2:07)
  2. 2 No Other Girl (2:29)
  3. 3 I'm Shakin' (2:22)
  4. 4 Border Radio (2:47)
  5. 5 American Music (2:10)
  6. 6 So Long Baby Goodbye (2:24)
  7. 7 Hollywood Bed (3:33)
  8. 8 Never No Mo' Blues (2:47)
  9. 9 This Is It (2:15)
  10. 10 Highway 61 (3:00)
  11. 11 I Love You So (2:51)
  12. 12 Stop the Clock (1:56)
  13. 13 Red Rose (2:32)
  14. 14 Barefoot Rock (2:31)
  15. 15 Bus Station (2:32)
  16. 16 One More Dance (2:28)
  17. 17 It Must Be Love (2:56)
  18. 18 Jubilee Train (3:04)
  19. 19 Long White Cadillac (2:55)
  20. 20 Fool's Paradise (2:46)
  21. 21 Boomtown (3:37)
  22. 22 Leaving (3:27)
  23. 23 Tag Along (2:58)
  24. 24 Justine (2:16)
  25. 25 Flattop Joint (2:33)
  26. 26 Leave My Money Alone (3:28)
  27. 27 One Bad Stud (2:30)
  28. 28 Blue Shadows (3:15)
Disc 2
  1. 1 Trouble Bound (3:48)
  2. 2 Just Another Sunday (4:15)
  3. 3 Hey, Girl (3:11)
  4. 4 Dark Night (3:51)
  5. 5 Little Honey (3:35)
  6. 6 Samson and Delilah (3:47)
  7. 7 Colored Lights (3:27)
  8. 8 Help You Dream (3:40)
  9. 9 Common Man (3:43)
  10. 10 Rock & Roll Will Stand (2:38)
  11. 11 Can't Stop Time (3:40)
  12. 12 Cry for Me (2:51)
  13. 13 Kathleen (4:57)
  14. 14 High School Confidential (2:22)
  15. 15 What Will Lucy Do ? (2:33)
  16. 16 Crazy Baby (2:38)
  17. 17 Got Love If You Want It (2:53)
  18. 18 Rock Boppin' Baby (2:18)
  19. 19 Walkin' With Mr. Lee (3:20)
  20. 20 Keep a Knockin' (2:08)
  21. 21 I Don't Want to Go (2:04)
  22. 22 Go, Go, Go! (2:12)
  23. 23 Roll 'Em Pete (4:50)
  24. 24 Take Out Some Insurance (4:59)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
The Blasters Primary Artist
Lee Allen Tenor Saxophone
Dave Alvin Guitar, Electric Guitar, Background Vocals
Phil Alvin Acoustic Guitar, Guitar, Harmonica, Vocals
John Doe Vocals
The Jordanaires Background Vocals
Gene Taylor Piano, Vocals
Richard Greene Violin
Larry Taylor Standup Bass
Bill Bateman Drums
John Bazz Bass
Steve Berlin Baritone Saxophone
Jeff Eyrich Bass
David Hidalgo Mandolin
Herman E. Johnson Background Vocals
Stan Lynch Percussion, Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Paul Gayten Composer
Big Joe Turner Composer
Dave Alvin Composer, Creative Consultant
Phil Alvin Producer
The Blasters Producer
John Doe Composer
Jerry Lee Lewis Composer
Pete Johnson Composer
Mississippi Fred McDowell Composer
Henry Jerome Composer
James Austin Liner Notes
Steve Bates Art Direction
Pat Burnett Producer, Engineer
Mark Ettel Engineer
Jeff Eyrich Producer
Don Gehman Producer, Engineer
Roger Harris Engineer
Dan Hersch Remastering
Dennis Kirk Remixing
John Mellencamp Producer
Townes Van Zandt Composer
Don Harris Composer
David Alhert Engineer
Steven Chean Editorial Research
Steve Crimmel Engineer
Reggie Collins Discographical Annotation
Digi Prep Remastering
Ron Hargrave Composer
Leigh Hall Liner Note Coordination
Jim Hill Engineer
Bob Ehret Composer
Damon Robertson Composer
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 2 )
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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 26, 2013

    well,these guys are really great live,I had a first hand listen

    well,these guys are really great live,I had a first hand listen in San Luis Obispo Ca. Track 12 was recorded by my dad in 1957. The Blasters called my dad{Bob Ehret},and invited he and I to join them in S.L.O. back stage before they went on ,it was an Eye opener for me,these guys were so nice to Bob,he thought they were fab,liked their sound!My mom,Betty Ehret has one copy of Stop The Clock,she sold all his guitars when he passed away in the 1980's,I'm glad she kept all his 45's and Lp's.Bob Ehret is in the rockabilly hall of fame.The Blasters are helping greatly to keep rockabilly alive! Keep listening, tell all your friends,when I was a little kid,I didn't get this style of music,now I love all country rock aka.rockabilly!




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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Definitely Great American Music

    Impeccable production qualities (after the first rare album), catchy hooks & phrases, accomplished musicians - it's hard to understand why this group didn't sell more widely. Much of this is wonderful boogie music for parties! Do yourself a favor however and indulge in a private listening session with my choice for best band of the 1980's - The Blasters.

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