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Mermaid Avenue 2

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Audio, Cassette, May 30, 2000
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Product Details

  • Audio Cassette (May 30, 2000)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Elektra / Wea
  • ASIN: B00004TCPE
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (48 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,107,085 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Airline to Heaven
2. My Flying Saucer
3. Feed of Man
4. Hot Rod Hotel
5. I Was Born
6. Secret of the Sea
7. Stetson Kennedy
8. Remember the Mountain Bed
9. Blood of the Lamb
10. Aginst Th' Law
11. All You Fascists
12. Joe DiMaggio Done It Again
13. Meanest Man
14. Black Wind Blowing
15. Somebody Some Morning Sometime

Customer Reviews

I too have looked forward to this second CD for a long time, and I love it just as much as the first one.
Laurie G. Sutton
This followup to Volume 1 finds Bragg and Wilco continuing to do their best work (Bragg, especially) with the help of Woody Guthrie's great lyrics.
T. C Lane
I'm very happy to see Wilco and Billy Bragg back in action together, producing a fine follow-up to one of the best albums in recent years.

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Gianmarco Manzione on May 31, 2000
Format: Audio CD
Mermaid Avenue Vol. II is patchier but no less enjoyable than its predecessor. Tweedy's claim that the album is "less folky" is fairly accurate, as most of the album's highpoints are more rooted in Rock 'N Roll than folk, such as "Airline To heaven" with its tantalizing drum rhythms and chorus, the rollicking and downright fun "Feed of Man" with its joyous guitar licks, or "Blood of the Lamb," an eerie mix of thumping drums and bells that would not sound out of place on Bob Dylan's recent "Time Out of Mind."
These sounds do not appear on vol. I, Tweedy is correct, and the result is stunningly good. The diversity of this album is even more startling than on Mermaid Avenue I. Not only does every song sound different from previous tracks, each song belongs to a different genre. Beyond the album's Rock tunes are some delightfully dirty blues tracks like "All You Fascists" and "Meanest man," which would fit perfectly on the next Tom Waits record. Bragg even touches on some jazzy drum shuffling and vocals on the very slick "Stetson Kennedy."
However, Wilco & Billy Bragg do not entirely ignore the folk roots that pervaded vol. I; "I was Born" is straight from the vein of vol. I's "Ingrid Bergman," and most will recognize "Eisler on the Go" lurking beneath the surface of the gorgeous acoustic ballad, "Black Wind Blowing."
Yes, this album does stretch the listener's attention span a bit more, the music is indeed more challenging, but delicately so. It is difficult to imagine that this talented group could deliver an album of as much meat as vol.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Marc A. Healy on July 5, 2003
Format: Audio CD
I was born and bred on rock and roll, but lately I've been more interested in jazz, world music and classical. I'm not really enthusiastic about folk music, but I listen to it from time to time. When I pulled this album from the bin at the library, it was because I had heard some Billy Bragg before and thought it was interesting. I knew nothing of Jeff Tweedy and Wilco. This disk blew me away- ecclectic, original, different yet familiar, I think every track is a winner, even though I like some better than others. Certainly if you are sick of listening to the same old stuff, this is a great mixture of rock, blues, bluegrass, folk, and musical styles that should just be filed under "other." I enjoyed this sequqal much more than the first "Mermaid Avenue" disk- but judging from the other reviews this is an issue of personal taste. Then again, isn't music like that to begin with? I appreciate Woody Guthrie a whole lot more now, and I think it's tremendous what modern independant musicians have done with material from a previous generation. Definately check this disk out- I think it belongs in any serious music lover's collection.
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29 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Voice of Chunk on June 1, 2000
Format: Audio CD
For those of you who had doubts as to whether Billy and Wilco could match the greatness of "Mermaid Avenue 1," you can put those doubts aside. Wilco puts in a series of stellar performances, from the Dylan-tinged opener "Airline to Heaven" to the Petty-ish "Secret of the Sea," to "Blood of the Lamb" which could have been penned and produced by Tom Waits. Billy Bragg, likewise, contributes consistently top-notch performances throughout the album, the highlights being "Black Wind Blowing" (which echoes "Eisler on the Go" from "Mermaid Avenue 1"), the train chugging "My Flying Saucer" and "Stetson Kennedy." Sure, Bragg favors the political and Wilco focuses on the romantic, but that should be no surprise to fans of either or both. In fact, that's the beauty of this album: There's a balance of ideas and sentiments, but an avoidance of didacticism and sentimentality. And it's all cemented together with loose, folky, rocking grooves. If you liked the first collection, you'll like this. If you're unfamiliar with "Mermaid Avenue," go buy it after you buy this one. You won't be disappointed.
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32 of 37 people found the following review helpful By "rainbowcrow" on June 9, 2000
Format: Audio CD
The second volume of that strange collaboration - Wilco, Billy Bragg, and the long-departed Woody Guthrie - is certainly a good album. Had this collection been Volume I, I probably would have raved about them, and marvelled that such an odd project could have been so successful. I would have doubtless mentioned Feed of Man, Hot Rod Hotel, and Meanest Man as exceptional songs. And I probably would have asked (as I did when I heard the actual Volume I) how a singer as talented as Natalie Merchant could do such a poor job on her token track.
But of course, these songs are Volume II. And one can tell. The best material really was picked up for Volume. There is no Walt Whitman's Niece, no California Stars, and certainly no Unwelcome Guest on this record. And so in summary, those who adored Volume I will certainly find their money's worth on Volume. But unlike that first volume, I cannot say that this is an essential record. If one were to buy only one, the first volume is a clear choice.
Or think of it this way. Composed of songs that didn't make the first cut, Bruce Springsteen's Tracks and Bob Dylan's Bootleg Series are both wonderful records for true fans. But if I were just starting out with either artist, they certainly would not be the first records to go and buy. The same holds for Mermaid Avenue II.
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