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  • Ghosts of Hallelujah
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Ghosts of Hallelujah Original recording reissued


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Audio CD, Original recording reissued, October 31, 2000
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Biography

Whether you think The Gourds non-sequitur loving n'ere-do-wells or post-modern lyrical geniuses, their mandala-like musical vignettes and gulps of down-home authenticity can not be denied. Musical lifers and road dogs to the end, Kevin 'Shinyribs' Russell, Jimmy Smith, Max Johnston, Keith Langford and Claude Bernard remain at once roots music's envelope pushers and its torch ... Read more in Amazon's Gourds Store

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Ghosts of Hallelujah + Dem's Good Beeble + Bolsa De Agua
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 31, 2000)
  • Original Release Date: 1999
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Original recording reissued
  • Label: Sugarhill
  • ASIN: B00004Z3V2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #300,611 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Up On High
2. Ghosts Of Hallelujah
3. Gangsta Lean
4. County Orange
5. Ladies Choice
6. January 6
7. Pair Of Goats
8. Fine Leather Truck
9. Bean Bowl
10. My Time, Yer Time
11. Son Of Burn
12. The Flat Baritone
13. (The New Way Of) Grievin' & Smokin'
14. Rugged Roses
15. Lowlands

Editorial Reviews

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By T. OConnor on April 12, 2000
Format: Audio CD
The Gourds have always been very very quirky (to use the term "real" critics like to use). What else can you call a country band that on occasion covers Snoop Doggy Dogg? Their previous albums have been examples in how odd lyrics and somewhat disturbingly sparse arrangments (usually built around accordian/mandolin/guitar) can work to make powerfully beautiful music.
This album departs from that form, albeit barely in that the music surrounding the lyrics (that will make you smile or shake your head, depending on your inclination) is a tad more mainstream alt-country.
Perhaps that is due to their growing fan base within the music community and getting people like Max Johnston to play with them. In any case, I kind of miss the stripped down sound of their album "dem's good beeble" or the flat-out weirdness on "Stadium Blitzer".
This is still a great album, and it may be the best for those uninitiated in Gourd-dom. The elements, lyrically, are all there--the curious interest in hip-hop culture ("Gangsta Lean"), the songs that refuse to make any real sense, and yet still make some kind of sense ("Fine Leather Truck"), and the occasional song about the rough life ("(the new way of) Grievin' & Smokin')".
Basically, I would recommend this album to anyone who enjoys Son Volt but wishes they would get goofy every once in awhile. The Gourds can do that, and play every bit as beautifully, when called upon, as Jay Farrar and his bunch of fellas.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By M. Alberts on March 13, 2001
Format: Audio CD
I will start this out by saying that these guys are not the Flecktones. However, they are about as much fun as you can have with bluegrass-tinged Alt-Country. From the first time I heard this album, it became one of my favorites.
They are a bit hard to describe. Definitely some bluegrass influence. At times a little bit of a zydeco feel, although not quite as sweat-soaked as a Clifton Chenier. And some old-style Grand Ol' Opry country roadhouse tunes. Not a bad mix. And these guys pull it off without making any of it sound forced.
What's right with this? How about as heart-felt a religious expression in the title track. How about "Grievin' and Smokin'", the song I heard live that made it a necessity of living to own this disc. How about "County Orange", a rollicking gem? While one or two songs might not be quite as strong, overall this is a great album that is never far from my changer.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jeremy Christensen on July 21, 2001
Format: Audio CD
this is what happens when very talented musicians get together and make music for the purpose of entertaining themselves. it is evident that these guys enjoy themselves. music that comes from the heart is rarity in today's corporate market, and that is why it is so important for more people to own this album.(not to mention other albums by the gourds) the title track is great, as are ... oh wait. the whole sum' bitchin' thing is gawdam fabulous. buy it, hear it, love it, become a better person.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on August 31, 1999
Format: Audio CD
Every year, the Gourds release a CD that I think will be impossible to top. And every year, I'm proved wrong by their latest release. "Ghosts of Hallelujah" is by far the boys' best -- for the first time, they sound like a complete band, thanks to former Wilco multi-instrumentatlist Max Johnston. The two singers/songwriters complement each other beautifully. KP Russell lets loose on "Ghosts of Hallelujah," a complex ode to spirituality and faith, and "Gangsta Lean," an angry, biting look at gangsta rap. And Jimmy Smith is still his usual, unintelligible self, wailing to such tunes as "Up on High" (the operative word being, apparently, "high") and the most beautiful love song of the year, "Rugged Roses." The music is a blend of country, bluegrass and rock with some unlikely zydeco and folk influences. The vocal deliveries are earnest and evocative. And the lyrics -- well, don't spend too much time trying to figure out what the hell they're talking about. Buy this album. See them live. The Gourds are the best band around in the increasingly ephemeral No Depression movement.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By loce_the_wizard VINE VOICE on April 29, 2005
Format: Audio CD
With their third release, "Ghosts of Hallelujah," the Gourds rightly ascended to the zenith of the Americana genre and for that matter staked a pretty good claim for best American band in any genre.

Chief songwriters Jimmy Smith and Kevin Russell ply their craft by again offering dark, funny, eccentric, odd, and vivid themes and lyrics that collide with some of the best ensemble playing of our times, all fueled by some gonzo muse that is best left unseen and only heard.

This 1999 release saw multi-instrumentalist Max Johnson join the fray and his impact on filling out the band's sound cannot be underemphasized.

It's hard to recommend one Gourds' CD over another, but this one seems a tad darker and biting than the others, is my least favorite of their sessions, and does not serve as the best introduction to the band.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By lost acre on March 6, 2006
Format: Audio CD
Dem's Good Beeble is probably still their best selection of songs to date (every song's a gem) but Ghosts of Hallelujah is probably their best album. It has several classics songs (like in Beeble) but the order of the songs make it their most cohesive. The opener "Up On High" (one of Jimmy's best) and the closer "Lowlands" (one of Kevin's best) give it it's shape. The mini WHO like rock opera "Bean Bowl", "My Time, Yer Time" and "Son Of Bum" makes perfect sense and helps cement the feel of this album. (And Grieven' & Smokin' is just a great Gourds tune.)
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