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51 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Criticism of sound quality? Please...
Whoever criticized the sound quality apparently has no idea of the back-history regarding this album.

Hank III spent 4 years fighting with his label to put out a record on his own terms, without the slick Nashville production of Risin' Outlaw and most of the boybands-with-a-fiddle on the radio. In addition to wanting to select and write his own material without...
Published on March 11, 2006 by Don Bliss

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51 of 59 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Sanitized Version of The Real Record
Before purchasing this record, please be aware that this is a "sanitized" version of the real record. For purists, this would be akin to throwing a loincloth over Michelangelo's David. Those whose delicate sensibilities would be offended by the real record wouldn't like Hank anyway. So why bother? Pass on this adulturated disc and get the real one. Five stars for Hank,...
Published on July 1, 2006 by PMazzei


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51 of 52 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Criticism of sound quality? Please..., March 11, 2006
By 
Don Bliss (Nashville, TN) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Straight to Hell (Audio CD)
Whoever criticized the sound quality apparently has no idea of the back-history regarding this album.

Hank III spent 4 years fighting with his label to put out a record on his own terms, without the slick Nashville production of Risin' Outlaw and most of the boybands-with-a-fiddle on the radio. In addition to wanting to select and write his own material without compromise, he also wanted to record a raw album, produce it himself with minimal overdubs and slick production. This was the way records used to be made in the 50s when most classic country was still recorded in primitive studios and released on independent labels. Considering the concept behind this album, the production quality sounds surpisingly modern. Hank III did an excellent job caputuring the nuances of acoustic instruments, and mixing them in a way that is very crisp and clear (unlike most vintage recordings from the 50s). He made the record himself at his house in a relaxed, creative environment - but unlike artists in the 50s, he used digital multitrack recording to more accurately capture the instruments. The vocals are more raw in places, but this is a throwback to hillbilly mountain music and western swing. It's not supposed to be pretty and slick. That's the whole point. Next time, be careful not to miss the forest for the trees.

And all that being said, there are quite a few songs that would stand up to anything on modern country radio as a hit song. Listen to "Low Down", "My Drinking Problem" or "Things You Do To Me". The vocal production on all of those songs, and the multi-part backing vocals on "Low Down" in particular, sound professionally-produced. The vocals match the top-notch sound quality of the instruments, the accessible quality of songwriting, and the tight performances. With these songs, everything comes together in a package that could compete with anything else on mainstream radio (without compromising an inch of Hank III's non-pop integrity). You could never tell that these songs were home recordings. And they still fit in with the rough, raw, non-radio friendly outlaw songs on the CD.
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39 of 41 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real Country is Back!, June 20, 2006
By 
D. Pitts (Blanco, TX USA) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Straight to Hell (Audio CD)
I'm an old fart. I bought 78's of Hank Sr. I had vinyl, then CD's, of Hank Jr. I liked 'em both, for their likeness and their differences. In Hank III, who I never knew existed until I saw this cd here on Amazon, is living proof that the hank legacy is real. This is one frikkin great cd. I love it!
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51 of 59 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Sanitized Version of The Real Record, July 1, 2006
By 
PMazzei (New Jersy, USA) - See all my reviews
Before purchasing this record, please be aware that this is a "sanitized" version of the real record. For purists, this would be akin to throwing a loincloth over Michelangelo's David. Those whose delicate sensibilities would be offended by the real record wouldn't like Hank anyway. So why bother? Pass on this adulturated disc and get the real one. Five stars for Hank, only one for the sanitized version for adulturating the original masterpiece.
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars pass on this...look for the original version!!!, December 21, 2011
This is Curb records pathetic attempt to get more $$ from one of the artists who have left their label. It is a stripped down version of what is an otherwise INCREDIBLE album. It was released several years ago to rave reviews, and has been one of Hank III's strongest albums to date. It's rowdy, it's raw, and it is most definitely IN YOUR FACE!! If you don't get easily offended, and would like to hear the ORIGINAL version of this album, please purchase the UNEDITED VERSION. And check out hank3.com for all of his new music that was released on his OWN label. I am not trying to slam Amazon. They have nothing to do with the release of this "sugar coated" version of Straight to Hell. 5 stars for Hank 3...1 star for this ploy from Curb Records to get MORE $$ from someone with whom they had a shaky business relationship. Shame on you, Curb records...SHAME ON YOU!!!
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I don't think ole Hank done it this way, December 21, 2011
By 
Lori Mohr (LOUISVILLE, KY, US) - See all my reviews
This is a watered down version of the original in your face, unapologetic, true outlaw country that Hank 3 fans have come to expect. This is a lame attempt at Curb to continue to destroy their artists in the name of the all mighty dollar. I can only believe that they are releasing the ammended version before the holidays to doup unexpecting customers. If you want the real version, do NOT purchase this CD. Hank is true, raw grit. The CD was released the way he intended for it. When coroporations re-release ammended versions, please know that it is not the artists vision. There are currently 4 CDs on Hank3.com that are for sale. All are very different styles and, all are what he visioned. He recorded, mixed and relesed the 4 CDs on his site without interference from corporate music. In my book, Hank 3 is real. He is as real as they come. I don't like my music washed down by an office exec telling me what they think is better. Go get after Hank3.com. Go get the original version of this release. I don't think ole Hank done it this way!!
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19 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars MIND-BLOWING COUNTRY MUSIC AS IT SHOULD BE!!, April 8, 2006
This review is from: Straight to Hell (Audio CD)
This album is a masterpiece in ANY music genre! It happens to be country music, which I normally cannot stand, but this is BRILLIANT! The lyrics really stick it up the wahzoo's of purveyors of boring pop/rock-country. Loads of people have already said it, but Grandpappy Hank Sr. would be SO proud!

This sprawling 2-disc set (talk about spraaaawl - the 2nd disc is ONE very long song! - Kinda like The Beatles' Revolution Nine on the White Album, a trippy sound collage of some Hillbilly Hell in Hank's head!) kinda reminds me of the album, London Calling by The Clash, in that each song is so varied from the previous. How appropriate that the album is titled Straight to Hell, since The Clash have a song by that name. They were punk/reggae/rockers, not country, but I get the same adrenaline rush when I put this CD on as I did the first 40 times I listened to the first Clash CD! Even on the slower twanga-a-doodle songs (of which there of very few)...My favorite tracks are ALL OF 'EM!! But especially, Pills I Took - it's hilarious! That's another thing about this album - it's a hoot! It'll have you smiling, I guarantee it, maybe even hootin' and hollerin'. I'm off in the direction of Hank III's other CDs...if they are half as good as this, I'll still be very pleased!
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Um, Please, April 4, 2006
This review is from: Straight to Hell (Audio CD)
To John Gervickas (Cape Coral, Florida United States):

Neither Hank Sr. nor Hank Jr. had the first name of Hank - it was their MIDDLE names. Hank Sr. was born Hiram Hank Williams. Hank Jr. was born Randall Hank Williams. Hank III was born Shelton Hank Williams.

Yes, he started out as a punk and metal musician. He didn't sell out to cash in on his family name. He still plays hardcore music. Go to one of his shows - he plays a set of old time country and a set of metal. But keep in mind that the sound of his country music is true to the roots of classic country. He doesn't prance around and try to sound like "Bon Jovi with a fiddle". He keeps his country and his rock seperate while staying true to the attitude of both. Most old time country was more similar in attitude to punk and metal than it was to modern pop country.

Also, if you're going to criticize his songwriting, try not to misquote the lyrics. Pay attention to songs such as Low Down, Things You Do To Me, D. Ray White, the rest of Not Everybody Likes Us (besides the line you misquoted), Angel of Sin, and Lousianna Stripes. Most of the more immature lines on the album are meant to be ironic; again, if you had followed Hank III or been to a show, you wouldn't have missed the point.

Anyway, next time do your homework before writing such an ignorant and misinformed review. By the way, I searched for your CD on here but couldn't find anything. Based on your criticims, I figured you would have released an audio masterpiece that would represent the pinnacle of Western composition and lyricism.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Battle Between Good And Evil, March 2, 2006
By 
PMazzei (New Jersy, USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Straight to Hell (Audio CD)
OK. Here's the deal. I've been fortunate enough to have knocked back a few cold ones with Hank at several of his shows and to have some of those "bootleg" recordings.

This album is the closest thing to being there and is the astonishing and shocking documentation of the spiritual struggle between good and evil for the possession of a human soul...Hank's. This is the same Satan who manifested himself to Robert Johnson at a Mississippi crossroads and that Dante encountered during his descent into the depths of hell. What's more, we are left not knowing who will win the struggle because I am convinced that Hank does not yet know the answer to that question himself.

The genius of this record is the simultaneous expression of the power of rebellion with the awareness of self destruction inherent in the rebellion itself.

This two CD set contains the most authentic recordings of unadulterated moonshine since Hank Sr. sat down with a guitar and a bottle of whisky in the 1950s. It's the type of record that Nashville refuses to make and sure as hell doesn't want you to hear from a guy who gives Nashville's big shots and pretty boys the kick in the ass they deserve. Sparks fly from the driving chords and pounding rhythms and ignites this record like it was soaked in gasoline. This hardcore hillbilly has the balls to invade the bastions of elitism and anti-hillbilly culture and hits them square in the face with some of the hardest core honky-tonk ever heard and has more guts than anything being produced by the plethora of pseudo-badass poseurs that infest the ranks of rap, rock and all the rest. Hank is real. He's hillbilly. And he's definitely in your face.

This album could never have been brought, kicking and screaming, into the world by way of normal studio production. It had to be crafted by Hank with other men who know the road Hank is traveling. The presence of studio "suits" would have ensured that the demons would not have come out. Done the way it was, the demons are out in force... sneering , snarling and drooling at the prospect of tearing Hank away from his God and devouring his soul. Will they succeed? Who knows? Hank sure doesn't. Not yet, anyway.

Shelton Hank's granddaddy, Hank Sr., lost that battle in the back of a Cadillac alone in the dead of night on the way to a show overcome, perhaps, by a lethal combination of liquor and painkillers. Let's hope his grandson triumphs before the demons get him as well.

Are the Grammys are paying attention? Don't hold your breath.

This is a seminal album you need to own.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hellbilly Hellraiser!!!, June 25, 2007
This review is from: Straight to Hell (Audio CD)
To call this latest Hank III release revolutionary should demonstrate just how far country music has fallen from its roots. However, if anyone should lead the charge to regain the outlaw image while redefining the mythology of country, it ought to be Hank III.

Simply put, this is an absolute masterpiece. While Broke, Lovesick and Driftin' is a crooner of a record grandpappy would be proud to hear, Straight to Hell offers the best of all country and western has to offer. And make no bones about it, Hank III is serious about his country. Everything from bluegrass to hillbilly to southern rock can be found here.

You can also find the reverance of a young man who knows his country roots. Country Heroes is an ode to those outlaws that came before him. The men on which country has come to rest and, in times of need, fallen back on. D Ray White pays homage to III West Virginia roots while reminding Country music lovers who this music is really about.

And yes, there is the country mythology. Whether Hank has done half the things he claims makes no difference. The energy, enthusiasm and integrity with which he performs will make you believe just about anything. For all I know, he wrestled a grizzly bear with one hand tied behind his back while chuggin' a beer. Hell, that is tame compared to some of the content within.

At times the pace is so fast you can't help but wonder how they pulled it off. If you are ever trying to get your moonshine over the border, fuel up with Dick in Dixie. This steamroller of a song will have you burning a whole in your boots.

Then there is Low Down, a mid-tempo, southern rock diddy that could just as well been done by Hank, Jr. And the blues based tune, Not Everybody Likes Us, lets you know exactly what Hank III really thinks of todays state of Nashville.

'Old school' country fans may find some of the lyrics a bit harsh. There are plenty of drug references and colorful metaphors to describe sex. New country fans will not care for Hank's direct approach to the latest happenings with today's country scene. However, these are trifle matters easily brushed aside by the brilliance of this disc.

Oh yeah, and that is only disc 1. If the first disc has you reaching for the bottle, the second disc may just land you in jail. Enjoy!
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good Album, April 17, 2006
By 
This review is from: Straight to Hell (Audio CD)
While this is probably closer to a four star than a five star, I am giving it five stars because of reviews by people who haven't heard the ablum because of the title. If you haven't heard it how can you review it? Don't for get the old saying " Never judge a book buy it's cover."

The CD itself is good. I like the music and even the lyrics. It is a great CD if you're out with your friends drinkin'. For obvious reasons I would not reccomend it for a family BAR-B-QUE.
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Straight To Hell [Explicit]
Straight To Hell [Explicit] by Hank Williams III
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