The Jayhawks | Hollywood Town Hall (Expanded) and Tomorrow the Green Grass (Legacy Edition)

Legacy/American (2011)
By ZETH LUNDY  |  January 19, 2011
4.0 4.0 Stars

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The reedy voices of Mark Olson and Gary Louris are why the Jayhawks stood out from the '90s alt-country crowd - two inextricably linked stalks of lonesome beauty, they remain impossible to discern from each other, impossible to peel apart. The Jayhawks also made some of the best harmony-laden, Fuzz Face–soaked, post-cosmic American music of that decade, so, you know, that helps. Hollywood Town Hall, with moody minor-key rockers "Waiting for the Sun" and "Wichita" (and the swift hands of session men Benmont Tench and Nicky Hopkins), is the group's best, but the more adventurous Tomorrow the Green Grass (their last with Olson) is nearly as good. On the eve of a reunion tour and a new studio album, both modern classics are revisited as separate deluxe reissues - which means not only outtakes and B-sides like the rocking "Leave No Gold," the country ditty "Keith and Quentin," and the gospel staple "Up Above My Head," but an entire disc of acoustic demos to accompany Tomorrow the Green Grass. On that, the voices of Olson and Louris are laid exceedingly bare - we're talkin' cassette-tape, woodsheddingly bare - and it's a fitting way to reintroduce a band built upon that very stuff. Although if it makes you feel more comfortable to smother it all with gnarly SG feedback, you'll find that here too

  Topics: CD Reviews , Gary Louris, Mark Olson, alt-country,  More more >
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