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Revolution Starts Now

Steve EarleAudio CD
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (118 customer reviews)

Price: $9.11 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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Revolution Starts Now + Jerusalem + Transcendental Blues
Price for all three: $27.09

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (August 24, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Artemis Records
  • ASIN: B0002IQHV6
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (118 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #63,897 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. The Revolution Starts…
2. Home To Houston
3. Rich Man's War
4. Warrior
5. The Gringo's Tale
6. Condi, Condi
7. F The CC
8. Comin' Around
9. I Thought You Should Know
10. The Seeker
11. The Revolution Starts Now

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

With more than 20 years as a recording artist, Steve Earle is one of America's most acclaimed & respected singer/songwriters. All four of his ESquared/Artemis studio albums have been Grammy nominees, with his production of Lucinda Williams' Car Wheels nabbing best Contemporary Folk Album. Now Earle returns with his most topical record to date. Much of The Revolution Starts Now is written like a newspaper, with impassioned political protest songs like the title track, "F the CC", & "Condi, Condi" (written for our National Security Advisor).

Earle rushed The Revolution Starts ... Now to stores ahead of the 2004 presidential election, and given that timing and the songwriter's righteous lefty stance, the disc's topical content should surprise exactly no one. Even still, it's light on invective, allowing Earle's deftly drawn characters to make his points for him. Plainspoken people swept up by larger events, they include the truck-driving protagonist of rig-rocker "Home to Houston," who dodges rockets while running supplies in Iraq, the disaffected vet in "The Gringo's Tale," and the American soldiers and Palestinian boys whose lives run parallel in "Rich Man's War." At times, Earle is less artful, and the going gets patchy: the title cut is a guitars-blazing call to arms, but "Warrior" (a ponderous spoken-word piece that apes Shakespeare), "F the CC" (a ragged denunciation of culture cops), and "Condi, Condi" (a faux-reggae mash note to Condoleezza Rice) don't hold up as well. Interestingly, the less-pointed material finds the cantankerous crusader at his best, as on the aching Emmylou Harris duet "Comin' Around," a late-night barroom blues called "I Thought You Should Know," and the hopeful closer "The Seeker." There, Earle slips in one last, subtle message: "There's a new day tomorrow and maybe I'll hold, something brighter than gold to a seeker." --Anders Smith Lindall

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
23 of 28 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gritty Rough & Tough August 24, 2004
Format:Audio CD
As a previous reviewer (and Steve himself) have said, this album was rushed a bit. Which is not to say it does not have its share of fantastic Steve Earle tunes. It does, and the first 5 songs are all 5 star Earle songs, with great political importance, some classic Earle style, and the spoken word pleasant surprise of Warrior. Warrior is Steve speaking pure gritty poetry with some rocking guitar in the background. A great tune. Rich Man's War is true to the times, and I'd put it up there with his last tunes of John Walker's Blues and Jerusalem, and even though it has names of places, it'll probably ring true for a long while, much like Talking Heads' "Listening Wind". Condi, Condi is the odd-ball tune out of all of them. Amusing, but sorta off a bit. F the CC has good lyrics, but the delivery seemed a bit lacking to me. The rest, however is quite amazing. But those two ones are the reason for the ****/*****, but I'd probably give it closer to a 4 1/2 stars.

I've been a fan of Steve Earle since I was 10, so 9 years now. I've yet to be disappointed. Steve is without a doubt one of the best song writers of our time.

I also feel that while yes, there is a political bias on this album, it is strong, honest, and sincere.
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Is it good? Is it important? It's Steve Earle August 25, 2004
Format:Audio CD
So let's start with the obvious: This is a political album. Whether one likes it or not may be heavily influenced by political stance - although there is no guarantee that you'll like it even if you're on the left side of politics. I happen to be on the same side of the fence as Steve Earle, so I don't mind the politics in it - but more important is the fact that I believe that anyone with a conviction has a right to find his/her own soapbox and blurt it all out. Steve Earle's soapbox happens to be a recording deal and a solid fanbase, and kudos to the man for running the risk of further alienation of part of his fanbase (read the reviews of Jerusalem here on Amazon if you're in doubt as to what I mean).

One thing worth noticing, though, is that he once again tries to present both sides of the story. In Rich Man's War, probably my favorite track off the album, he presents the war from both sides - although only from the people who fight it - and not the ones instigating it. I personally find his storytelling skills to grow even further on this album, and while noone would doubt his political agenda, I still don't get the feeling that he is force feeding us his beliefs.

Now - on to the record itself. It's been playing in my car a couple of times, and while I like it, it is not a great Steve Earle album. Most of the songs are written based on the formula he seems to have employed on the last couple of album - most noteworthy are the simularities to Jerusalem as far as song structure goes - but it is all signature Steve Earle, and, to paraphrase another reviewer here, it beats most of the crap released these days, whether it is in the rock or country sections. There are a couple of exceptions - most notably Condi, Condi - which is his ode to Condoleezza Rice, a song that screams of lust and fun and joy of life.

All in all this is a solid album. It's not Steve Earle's best, but it might just be his most important.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rushed effort, but continues his roll of great records August 31, 2004
Format:Audio CD
Steve Earle is on a roll like no one else in recent history. Beginning with Train a Comin', Earle began a string that, in my opinion continues with this record. I'll start with the obvious; the record is short and contains 2 virtually identical versions of the same song. I have no problem with this, but it does mean the songs better be of top quality from beginning to end. He falls a bit short; the record is admittedly rushed, but along the way still manages to have a fair number of potential classics included.

The record begins and ends with Earle's statement of purpose, "The Revolution Starts Now". It's a fine, psychedelic double tracked vocal somewhat reminiscent in sound to "Everyone's In Love With You" from the "Transcendental Blues" record. It certainly sets the tone and I could see it getting some airplay on the radio, quite frankly. I wish it had been changed more for the repeat at the end (I understand an acoustic version exists and I imagine that could have been a fine closing track). "Home to Houston" follows up the opener with a typical Earle story song, reminiscent in sound to Buck Owens or early Dwight Yoakam. The story is about a trucker who finds himself driving in Iraq, over his head and hoping to return home alive. It's a solid track, but the record really takes off with "Rich Man's War". This song has some of Earle's best writing. It is basically a statement about the world that war is fought by the poor to benefit the rich. The inclusion of a verse from the perspective of a Palestinean suicide bomber really universalizes the point.

The record continues with "Warrior" a spoken word track that many will hate, but I find the groove infectious and the lyrics enthralling. "Gringo's Tale", which follows is another patented Earle story song.
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47 of 63 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars NOW!!!! September 6, 2004
Format:Audio CD
I must say that Steve Earle has been a songwriting hero of mine forever. When he was writing songs about gettin on a beast and ridin into the wind, I lived vicariously. I had one wife, he's had six. He got arrested, I got a parking ticket. Steve Earle has been a rebel in my world of rather safe living.

Has anyone noticed that the nation is mad!!! At the end of Farenheit 911 the credits read "Do Something"!!! In the liner notes for this album Earle talks about the immediacy of the recording. This is Steve Earle doing something. Whether I agree or diagree, whether this is the greatest work ever, I think Earle has used his surliness to his advantage and puts his money where his mouth is.

For me, this album is awesome. Yes, warrior takes a little getting used to, but this is a little less pointed than Jerusalem, which I thought was wonderful but a little heavy handed. At the forefront of the songs stand the people in the middle of their governments decision. the soldiers, the different cultures effected by war,people hurt and disatisfied. I love "coming around" which speaks of people "coming around" to speaking up. Usually the term "Coming around" speaks to a mellowing, here it is a different idea.

Probably the most controversial pieces are highly enjoyable, the love song to Condaleeza Rice "condi Condi" and the rabblerousing :F the CC.

I really take objection to people who talk about the downfall of Steve Earle as a songwriter. What about the upswing of Steve Earle as the voice of a disenfranchised nation. How about Steve Earle who sees a necessity for action above craftsmanship. This is an amazing, somewhat quick work by someone who when the smoke clears, and he does get up there with Townes Van Zandt, Johnny Cash and Warren Zevon will look on it all, and know he made a difference

and then he"ll probably say the f word to the angels.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Great music as a political statement
This album rocks. The political statements were a little controversial when it first came out, but now it appears they were some of the first of numerous similar statements by... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Richey Lee
5.0 out of 5 stars My Favorite Steve Earl Album
Interesting to me that some Earle fans don't rate this album highly. It's my favorite Steve Earle album.

Rich Man's War and Gringo Tale are classic Earle songs. Read more
Published 15 months ago by mark wallis
3.0 out of 5 stars Haphazard
There are some good tracks on here, but they seem to be EITHER lyrically significant OR musically listenable, but rarely both. Read more
Published on May 19, 2009 by Dixie Diamond
1.0 out of 5 stars Buyer Beware
I am a big Steve Earle fan. While his big hits are catchy and memorable, no song on this album qualifies. Read more
Published on January 8, 2008 by Chris Frerich
4.0 out of 5 stars The Revolution stalls out
Before the no votes start piling up, let me put this upfront. I really dig Steve Earle. To my tastes, both "Copperhead Road" and "El Corazon" are five star records. Read more
Published on March 20, 2007 by Tim Brough
3.0 out of 5 stars 3 stars for about 4 good songs..
This is an overall forgettable album when you compare it to any of Steve's other work. "Rich Man's war" "Home to Houston" and the title track are up to standard, the others are... Read more
Published on February 28, 2007 by Christopher Barrett
2.0 out of 5 stars He Ain't No Emmas Revolution
Good songs, good songwriter but if you want to hear REAL Revolution Rauk you need to hear Emmas Revolution. Read more
Published on February 1, 2007 by Sheila P. Miles
5.0 out of 5 stars Raw, powerful
The appeal of this album is its raw approach to social awareness. Earle doesn't hold back. The CD was out early in the Iraq war -- unlike other singers and groups, Earle didn't... Read more
Published on January 25, 2007 by Paul S. Thompson
1.0 out of 5 stars So What's New...?
Same old liberal doubt popular in his circle...'birds of a feather'. Nevetheless, the Republic suvives in spite of the S.E.'s of the world.
Published on November 1, 2006 by D. Nash
4.0 out of 5 stars Loved it
I'm a huge Steve Earle fan. This is not one of his best, but the politics on this CD made him go from being one of my favorite songwriters to one of my heroes. Give 'em hell Steve!
Published on August 24, 2006 by BlueCross Boss
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