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on August 17, 2001
Revenant has issued some of the best old music compilations: Dock Boggs' "Country Blues," the Stanley Brothers' first recordings, the Anthology of American Folk Music Vol. 4 (not to mention the upcoming super-definitive collection of Charley Patton recordings: "Screamin' and Hollerin' the Blues). Great, obscure music, and inventive, eye-catching packaging.
This compilation is no exception. This is the most astounding collection of old-time gospel and sacred music ever compiled. From the bone-shattering sacred songs of Charley Patton (as the Elder J.J. Hadley) to the sublime Blind Roosevelt Graves to the strange Rev. I. B. Ware.....there is simply no weak tune here. The title isn't misleading: this is as raw as you can get. Sanctified and rockin' and spine-tingling, this is simply one great album!
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on July 10, 2001
I did. If this one might be better than "The Half Ain't Never Been Told" then it must be essential. It is. This disc will snap your head back. Powerful no nonsense music. American roots music, oh baby that's one thing we did absolutely right.
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on November 25, 1998
As soon as I saw the picture of Charley Patton on the cover, and then saw that it was compiled by John Fahey, I knew this was going to be something special. When I brought it home and listened to it I was so overwhelmed that I had to wait a full day before I could listen to it again. Some of the musicians on the CD are old favorites, but most of them are obscure. Very powerful stuff here. One can only hope that Fahey and Co. have more gems like these in the vault. In the meantime, this is one CD that deserves to be listened to over and over.
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on October 2, 1998
A group of wonderful authentic tracks dug up and given the fresh air they deserve. Want to escape passionless singers, slick musicians and mindless mass market music? Here is a great great start. Extra Kudos to Revenant for producing the most beautiful packages to ever contain a cd. Many Stars!
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on September 30, 2004
Albums like this make me feel great and really bummed out at the same time. Great because this music is as pure, raw and unpop as you can get, just amazingly real, but bummed because real music like this is gone and dead. At least we have these records of a time before proffesionalism and corporations destroyed music (and everyother art form).

I don't beleive in god or religion, but this is still one of my fave cds, heck if there was music like this in churches nowadays, i'd be going to church all the time. So don't let the term Gospel turn you off, this doesn't sound like Gospel, it's only gospel cause they mention jesus once and a while.
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on March 27, 2002
Obviously the music presented here is really great. My only beef is the really poor condition of some of the 78s used. I know this stuff is really rare, but I bet there are cleaner copies of these records out there. Is it supposed to be important that these are John Fahey's 78s? It's not to me. I don't have much music of this type, but I found a much cleaner copy of the Jaybird Coleman track on an old Biograph LP called "This Old World's In A Hell Of A Fix." Even dubbing the version off this LP would have been better that the severely damaged copy of the 78 used for this CD. I wonder if their Charley Patton CD box set was also produced with poor condition 78s like these?
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on May 18, 2014
The only thing that really needs to be said is that this collection needs to be re-issued so that more people can enjoy it. Thank you to all the collectors who chased down these recordings and made them available to those of us who would never know about them otherwise. People who complain about sound quality of recordings 90+ years old don't understand that ghosts tend to be careless about such things.
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on February 12, 2007
A fine selection of gospel, most of which was probably sold through the "race" market, and I've never seen any of these, even in the vintage sellers. Buy it!
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on March 18, 2012
I love this music and glad that I have it. But I regret ONE DIME of my money going to such a condescending, arrogant jerk as John Fahey, who wrote the liner notes for the music he loves by the people he mocks. At best, he says Catholics are real Christians and Evangelicals are pagans. His blanket statements and complete misunderstanding of Evangelicals, and Protastants in general, to say nothing of his denigration of the place that the experience of Christ plays for these "filthy savages" would be laughable if it wasn't so mean spirited. Get the music. Don't pay for it.
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