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2003
| BS 095
$9.95

The Executioner's Last Songs: Volumes 2 & 3

2 discs, 27 songs...full of death, murder and mayhem.
Classics, near classics and songs you've never heard of by a cavalcade of stars, near stars and people you've never heard of.

Full Description

Here's The Pine Valley Cosmonauts playing their old death card and raising a little more hell and cash to help wean America off its life threatening death penalty dependency. On hearing  Volume One , former Illinois Governor George Ryan spontaneously cleared Death Row and was heard to whimper, "Shit, those country commies know their chops!!!" This leaves us little doubt that this  TWO DISC SET  sequel portends oblivion for the hangmen that lurk in the rest of the nation.

Upon completion of  Volume One  we invited more of our favorite singers and songwriters to contribute voices and reputations and were pleasantly trampled by herds of willing collaborators (hence the double disc). They suggested deathly ditties unknown to us, wrote site-specific new ones or quietly bent our cruel and unusual will. Songs of death, murder and mayhem to help drag the dark beast to closure.

"Big deal," you say. "Lefty politics in troubled times," you warn, "Remember what happened to Bill Maher and the Dixie Chicks" you remind. "I don't care about this stuff, I might even disagree," you scoff.

"Is it good?" the music fan in you rightfully demands.

Well, friends, check out this record, and we think you'll agree, this is one tremendous collection regardless of where you stand in the ever so colorful political spectrum. Contributing artists include:  Tim Rutili  (Califone),  Dave Alvin  (Blasters, Knitters),  Kurt Wagner  (Lambchop),  Otis Clay  (smoooth soul singin' legend),  Sally Timms Kelly Hogan , Rico Bell , Chris Mills,  Deano  (Dollar Store, Waco Brothers), English folk heroine  Charlotte Greig Alejandro Escovedo Rebecca Gates  (Spinanes),  Rhett Miller  ( Old 97's ),  Rex Hobart Edith Frost Mark Eitzel  (American Music Club), Gurf Morlix,  The Meat Purveyors , English folk-rock weirdo genius  Kevin Coyne ,   Jon Rauhouse , a classic track from  The Sundowners , and much more. WOW!!!

This two-CD set  is  bargain priced , and all artists' proceeds benefit the  National Coalition Against the Death Penalty .

Short Description
  • Regardless of where one stands on this issue, this is an incredibly diverse and vibrant selection of roots music spanning a healthy variety of modes 'n' moods ... The heartfelt and committed vocal performances give Last Songs ... both variety and consistency.

    — MSF Weekly
  • Regardless of where one stands on this issue, this is an incredibly diverse and vibrant selection of roots music spanning a healthy variety of modes 'n' moods ... The heartfelt and committed vocal performances give Last Songs ... both variety and consistency.

    — MSF Weekly
  • A timely reminder in these days when freedom of speech can prove as elusive as it did recently to Natalie Maines, that protest through country music is nothing new.

    — Country Music People
  • What makes Last Songs Vol. 2 & 3 hang together so much better than most "tribute" and thematically based compilations is the sturdy sense of purpose provided by the PVCs on nearly all of the tracks.

    — SF Weekly
  • A skillful evocation of humor, sarcasm, fatalism, nostalgia and resignation. Like much of country music, the songs vacillate between condemning and romanticizing their protagonists, but they all strive to humanize rather than demonize.

    — Riverfront Times
  • On volumes two and three the tracks vary greatly in style, but stay constant in the fact that they’re all really fuckin’ good. This is a key point in the fact that the collection has a level of quality that is seldom reached on discs with such a variety of contributors. this disc is essential listening for fans of bluegrass, country, alternative or just death.

    — Exclaim
  • A timely reminder in these days when freedom of speech can prove elusive that protest through country music is nothing new.

    — Country Music People
  • All 27 tracks are worth hearing, and regardless of your stand on the death penalty, the album boasts far too much good music from too many worthy artists for anyone with even a passing interest in roots music to pass up.

    — Allmusic.com
  • Like Nick Cave's Murder Ballads with a politi-punk agenda, these sober yarns of outlaws and Stagger Lees are the Harry Smith Anthology set to puree, blurring the darkest paths of folk traditions. With a lineup as enormous as the project's weight, these country alchemists sing hard about death to get you to appreciate life.

    — CMJ

Track List

Disc 1:

  • 1. Gallows Pole (vocals by Tim Rutili of Califone)
  • 2. Louis Collins (vocals by Dave Alvin)
  • 3. The Fall of Troy (vocals by Kurt Wagner of Lambchop)
  • 4. Banks of the Ohio (vocals by soul LEGEND Otis Clay)
  • 5. Homicide (punk classic with vocals by Skid Marks and Sally Timms)
  • 6. Green Green Grass of Home (vocals by Kelly Hogan)
  • 7. Death Row (vocals by Rico Bell of The Mekons)
  • 8. Gulag Blues (vocals by Lu Edmonds of The Mekons)
  • 9. Horses (vocals by Chris Mills w/ Dave Alvin)
  • 10. Strange Fruit (vocals by Diane Izzo)
  • 11. One Dyin & A Buryin' [live] (vocals by David Yow of The Jesus Lizard)
  • 12. Delilah (vocals by Jon Langford and Sally Timms)
  • 13. Willie O'Winsbury (vocals by Charlotte Greig)
  •  

Disc 2:

  • 1. Bad News (vocals by Alejandro Escovedo w/Dave Alvin & Jon Langford)
  • 2. The Ballad of Billy Joe (vocals by Rebecca Gates of The Spinanes)
  • 3. Dang Me (vocals by Rhett Miller of Old 97's)
  • 4. Forever to Burn (vocals by Rex Hobart)
  • 5. Death Where is Thy Sting (vocals by Pat Brennan)
  • 6. Long Black Veil (vocals by Sally Timms and Edith Frost)
  • 7. God's Eternal Love (vocals by Mark Eitzel of the American Music Club)
  • 8. Hangin' Me Tonight (vocals by Gurf Morlix)
  • 9. John Hardy (vocals by The Meat Purveyors)
  • 10. Pardon This Coffin (vocals by Jon Rauhouse)
  • 11. Saviour (vocals by Kevin Coyne)
  • 12. Green Green Grass of Home (vocals by Dave Alvin)
  • 13. Angel of Death (vocals by Tom Greenhalgh of The Mekons)
  • 14. Tom Dooley (by the Sundowners)

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