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The Shepherd's Dog

Iron & WineAudio CD
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (95 customer reviews)

Price: $12.88 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details
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MP3 Music, 12 Songs, 2007 $9.49  
Audio CD, 2007 $12.88  
Vinyl, 2007 $14.98  

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Boy With a Coin from the album A Shepherd's Dog

Biography

Over the course of his ten-year career, Iron and Wine's Sam Beam has become one of today's greatest story tellers, crafting meticulous tales full of forlorn love, religious imagery and wistful dreams. Many fell in love with Iron and Wine Beam's tender and spare rendering of The Postal Service's "Such Great Heights" was featured on the Garden State soundtrack in 2002. ... Read more in Amazon's Iron & Wine Store

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The Shepherd's Dog + OUR ENDLESS NUMBERED DAYS [Vinyl] + Around the Well
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (September 25, 2007)
  • Original Release Date: 2007
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sub Pop
  • ASIN: B000TQZ7O4
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (95 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #33,433 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Pagan Angel And A Borrowed Car
2. White Tooth Man
3. Lovesong Of The Buzzard
4. Carousel
5. House By The Sea
6. Innocent Bones
7. Wolves (Song Of The Shepherd's Dog)
8. Resurrection Fern
9. Boy With A Coin
10. Devil Never Sleeps, The
11. Peace Beneath The City
12. Flightless Bird, American Mouth

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com

Following a one-record hiatus to collaborate with Tucson collective Calexico on 2005's In The Reins, Iron & Wine (Sam Beam, that is) recoils to the earnestness and intimacy that embodied his first two records, his cerebral words and phrases tunneled beneath an orchestra of guitar, banjo, keyboards, and strings. More definitive than ever, the rhythm and percussion complement Beam's voice, a lulling, almost eerie tone that occasionally recalls John Lennon's early solo work, especially on delicate tracks like the bluesy "Wolves (Songs of the Shepherd's Dog" and "Carousel," with its veiled references to Iraq. Those raised on the lo-fi routine of Beam's earlier work will find rawness and sanctity in the more upbeat selections: The CSN folk-rock of "House by the Sea" and "Boy with a Coin" and the atmospheric beauty of "Pagan Angel and a Borrowed Car" and Shepherd's best song, "Lovesong of the Buzzard." With an organ swirling about and a slide guitar adding gentle flourishes, Beam concedes that "no one is the savior they would like to be," without realizing that, when it comes to fluent music and pristine storytelling, perhaps he is. --Scott Holter

More from Iron & Wine


Our Endless Numbered Days


The Creek Drank the Cradle


In the Reins, with Calexico


Woman King


The Sea & the Rhythm


Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
42 of 47 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sonics Expand, Charm Remains October 1, 2007
Format:Audio CD
What a remarkable album. Sam Beam takes new steps with each song, pulling in new instruments and new styles without losing his soul or his signature whisper. From steel guitar to jazz piano, each new addition is incorporated with aplomb, and nothing feels forced.

For fans coming to this straight from the last "album," Our Endless Numbered Days, the changes may come as a surprise, but those who've heard Woman King or In the Reins, an EP collaboration with Calexico, will recognize this album as a logical follow-up to those efforts. Indeed, two members of Calexico appear here, contributing to the filling-out of a sound that is bigger and better than ever. Iron and Wine can still do introspective, soul-searing songs (like album-closer "Flightless Bird, American Mouth) better than almost anyone. Now the band can make you dance, too, on songs like "The Devil Never Sleeps."

If that seems unlikely, consider this: So far, every time I listen to the album, I end up playing it twice. Sam Beam has discovered new worlds of sound. Won't you explore them with him?
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One Of The Best Of 2007 (Without A Doubt) December 15, 2007
By oxxo
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
OK, so you loved "Creek Drank The Cradle", but didn't like "Woman King" as much, but then "Our Endless Numbered Days" grew on you, but still your favorite is "Sea & The Rhythm" (and really you just want to hear Sam cover more Postal Service songs because Garden State is your favorite movie of all time, and you saw it way before anyone else), so you took a listen to "In The Reins" with Calexico, but it was too Western or Spanishy or something, so you went ahead and bought "Shepherd's Dog" anyway and now you're not sure what to say about it because there's more instruments and stuff.

Jeez people, give it a rest. This is a great album, and easily one of the best of 2007.

PS: If you buy the album directly from SubPop.com, you get a bonus CD of two extra songs: "Arms Of A Thief" & "Serpent Charmer".
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19 of 22 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars My mind, my ears, my body, my heart... September 25, 2007
Format:Audio CD
Having just bought the album it hasn't had time to sink in yet like Sam Beam's other albums have, but seeing so few reviews on the page I figured I should contribute some first impressions. First off, if you're a fan of Iron & Wine already you shouldn't need to read a review, just purchase the CD now!

Iron & Wine (Sam Beam) has captivated listeners from his first album, "The Creek Drank the Cradle" (TCDTC) with his soft, restrained voice and simple, subtly perfect guitar work--and held them since. This album does not disrupt the slow transformation towards a more band driven, "fuller" sound, evident on each of his consecutive LP releases. The percussion is much more present in these songs than in, say, "Our Endless Numbered Days" or TCDTC (which really didn't have any). Lucky for us the percussion section really pulls it off, managing to become a solid "spine" for much of the album while remaining diverse, interesting, and spirited.

The lyrics are incredible as always, on par in my opinion with Tom Waits and Leonard Cohen, though not necessarily as direct, or dark as those two can be. Although the lyrics are consistently poetic and beautiful they don't quite reach the level of emotion as on his first album TCDTC, nor do they feel as thematically related as his EP "Women King."

At the moment, the stand out tunes for me are 'Wolves (Song of the Shepherd's Dog)' and 'Resurrection Fern.' The first is rhythmically intense; a perfect example of the evolution of Sam Beam's sound and perhaps a hint at a more experimental future for Iron and Wine. At times this song sounds like a Tom Waits from Rain Dogs, and at other times it reminds me of Bob Marley's later years.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Objectively, how can anyone not rate this 5 stars... August 20, 2009
By Ryan
Format:Audio CD
... Ok so I realize we all have different tastes in music but this album is simply phenomenal. Everytime I hear Resurrection Fern or Flightless Bird I find that I have to pause for the entire song just to take it in. The beautiful melodies in Sam Beam's songs coupled with lyrics that paint such a vivid portayal of life (particularly in the American Southeast) immediately transport me to the rural backroads of the South Carolina lowcountry. Having such a specific and immediate response to these songs is something that doesn't happen often and there are only a few records I own (i.e., Lucinda Williams' 'Car Wheels on a Gravel Road' and Son Volt's 'Trace') where I can close my eyes and visualize the lyrics almost as if I was there. I also love Beam's earlier work, 'The Creek Drank the Cradle' and 'Our Endless Numbered Days' for this same reason and don't think the greater production and added instruments on 'The Shepherd's Dog' detract in any way from its charm. Quite the opposite, really. I think this album warrants greater attention and more repeated listens than his earlier work to capture the detail. Easily 5 stars.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best of the year October 9, 2007
By dm
Format:Audio CD
I was a bit hesitant to purchase this CD. Not that I don't love Sam Beam's previous work; in fact I think he's one of America's best unknown musical talents. It's just that his inaugural CD, The Creek Drank The Cradle, was so overwhelming that I found his second release, Endless Summer Days, to be a slight letdown.

Grateful I am that I purchased this CD and it has stayed resident in my player ever since. This is music which can be listened to over and over again. I can imagine that some songs, such as "Carousel" and "Ressurection Fern" will be sung around campfires and during protest marches decades from now.

I understand this it's hard for many to appreciate this musician with a whisper of a voice. Sometimes it's almost as if he doesn't want to be heard. Ironic, then, that what he voices is a shout compared to the banal trivialities which populate today's popular music.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointed. I had only heard one song from this ...
Very disappointed. I had only heard one song from this album and loved that song...but that was it. Rest of the album sounds all alike and boring. Would not recommend.
Published 1 month ago by J LaFerriere
5.0 out of 5 stars Great
One of my favorite CDs ever. I have it on my appalachian playlist, because to me it has that vibe, also on my mellow playlists for when I'm working at home on the computer. Read more
Published 4 months ago by Sherri Jones
5.0 out of 5 stars Resurrection Soul
Unlike most albums, which start with strong material and fade a bit over 10-12 songs, this album gains a builds as it moves on, the second half being clearly stronger. Read more
Published 7 months ago by Daniel W. Bleier
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Music and Perfect Condition
This album is excellent which I feel like anyone who wants to order it probably knows that. The package came in perfect condition and was well protected with no scratches or... Read more
Published 8 months ago by Steven
5.0 out of 5 stars This is for the ages.
this is such good music, that words can`t express the beauty within it.
Thank you, Iron and Wine, for making my days better with such a great feat. Read more
Published 12 months ago by The cimmerian
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic
Everything about this album is wonderful. The music is beautifully executed, the band is well practiced, and Sam Beams warm vocals and GENIOUS lyrics make this album worth adding... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Blaine Counter
5.0 out of 5 stars Most captivating Iron & Wine album!
I had just graduated high school in 2007 when I stumbled across this album in a Best Buy. I had heard a few of Sam Beam's songs and was attracted to his style of guitar playing... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Josh Sims
5.0 out of 5 stars Put your headphones on
Another great album from Iron & Wine. No, it is not the lone man and his guitar. That stuff is hot too, but this is on a whole new level. Read more
Published 16 months ago by 1_4Kabby
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyed it!
It had an interesting variety of musical styles. I liked it for the fact that it seemed a little more introspective than some of the other albums.
Published 16 months ago by snicktacular
4.0 out of 5 stars Not what I'm used to but it's growing on me
This album is a little different from what I'm used to from Iron and Wine - the music isn't as simple or mellow as some of the older albums, however I'm definitely enjoying it.
Published 17 months ago by Selba
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