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Zero Church

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Audio CD, January 22, 2002
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$13.99 & FREE Shipping on orders over $35. Details Only 6 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Gift-wrap available.

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Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
listen  1. Couldn't Hear Nobody Pray 2:00$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  2. Jeremiah 3:30$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  3. Anyway 2:47$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  4. Each Of Us Has A Name 2:19$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  5. Why Am I Praying 2:56$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  6. Teach Me O Lord 3:36$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  7. Hallelujah 4:01$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  8. A Prayer 4:19$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen  9. Praise Song For A New Day 1:55$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen10. Sounds 3:31$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen11. Allende 3:46$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen12. This Gospel How Precious0:55$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen13. New York City 3:21$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen14. Aveenu Malcainu 1:54$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen15. Together With You 2:24$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen16. God Bless The Artists 2:33$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen17. Musical Prayer By Francis Bok0:52$0.99  Buy MP3 
listen18. Musical Prayer By Francis Bok 3:09$0.99  Buy MP3 

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (January 22, 2002)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Red House
  • ASIN: B00005TPF2
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #209,363 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Editorial Reviews

Product Description

In a time of national mourning and spiritual searching, Suzzy and Maggie Roche offer a balm to soothe the troubled soul. Zero Church, a collection of prayers set to music, grew out of the sisters' participation in a seminar at Harvard University's Institute on the Arts and Civic Dialogue, and was originally set to be released on September 11, 2001. At that point, Suzzy wrote "New York City," a musical meditation for the missing, the families of the dead, and the heroes of the day. That particular piece joins songs based on extraordinarily moving prayers of an AIDS patient, a Vietnam soldier-turned-firefighter, a nun, a gay man remembering Matthew Shephard, and a former African slave, among others. The Roches themselves sing like angels, and when they're joined by DuPree, a veteran artist at the institute, you'll swear there's a heavenly choir at work. Divine inspiration, and then some. --Alanna Nash

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

33 of 34 people found the following review helpful By Gavin B. on January 31, 2002
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
It's hard to beleive that it has been 23 years since the Roche sisters released their debut album and created a buzz both in folk and alternative music circles. Over the past ten years, we have only gotten a few precious morsels from the Roches: Suzzy released a wonderful solo album in 2000; and in 1995 the Roches released their last album with all 3 sisters, the stunning but idosyncratic "Can We Go Home Now." It is befuddling that the Roches have failed to reach a broader audience, beyond the handful of listeners who adore them. The Roches are simply too clever, too eccentric, too bohemian, and too damn good to reach the MTV generation who need whistles, bells, nose piercings and go-go girls to maintain their attention span. I am hoping that the message of "Zero Church" by sisters Suzzy and Maggie Roche, will reach the ears of the unordained.
For Roche fans: even without Terre (where is she??), there are the familiar tightly arranged and etheral harmonies that we have loved throughout the years. The big change is the skewed whimsy of the Roches is gone. This album was scheduled for release on 9/11/01, the dark day of the World Trade Tower disaster, and the Roche sisters elected to shelve it until last week (01/22/02). The result is the addition of "New York City" a heartfelt and powerful elegy to the people of the Big Apple. The remaining songs are prayers put to music by the sisters. The crisp minimalist production values and the addition of guest artists like Sweet Honey in the Rock's Ysaye Barnwell, the Institute of Arts and Civic Dialogue's Dupree and the multi-talented Ruben Martinez, more than fill the gaps left by Terre Roche's absence from this project. The result is the first magnificent CD release of 2002, and the most cohesive offering ever from the Roches.
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 1, 2002
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Maggie and Suzzy Roche harmonize, sometimes with others, on a collection of prayers, many which they set to music. The effect is moving and soothing and aurally gorgeous. This is the most satisfying work by any of the Roches singularly or collectively since the great "A Dove". The sisters have always had a strain of existential angst and yearning, sometimes served straight up (The Beautiful Love of God, In the World) sometimes ironically and comically (Another World, Largest Elizabeth in the World). Being prayers, this collection rests in the straight up camp. Roche sisters have always been able to avoid the danger of their too beautiful voices becoming precious by mixing it up with effective dissonances or complex voicings of their harmonies and this is no exception. "Jeremiah" is simple and sweet, "Anyway" bright and catchy. Such tunes here are always countered by a dark and doleful sound likethat on "Each of Us Has A Name." It requires genius to successfully mix up a white girl sound like the Roches' with the earthy black gospel singing of DuPree and Ysaye Barnwell and not be left feeling that all the singing should have been left to the latter. On tunes like "Couldn't Hear Nobody Pray" you hear how the Roche girls let you hear everybody pray, and in their own way, and make music worthy of repeated listening.
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17 of 20 people found the following review helpful By S. Grooms on July 10, 2003
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Evaluating these reader reviews is frustrating because so many sound like typically uncritical fan ravings or the carping of a sorehead who enjoys being negative. In either case, I rarely feel I have learned anything about whether or not I would like the album.
That said, I invite anyone who enjoys the Roches--or anyone who simply enjoys good music--to give this album a chance. Be prepared to fall in love.
When the Roches began issuing albums and performing concerts in the late 1970s, they featured superb harmony and a particuarly brainy sort of sexuality. They have always been too principled to serve up dummed-down, highly commercial albums crafted to not offend. You could describe their work with such adjectives as sassy, quirky, witty, goofy, lovely, empathetic and--again--sexy.
One word I would never have mentioned with respect to the Roches' earlier work is "spiritual." But of course, spirituality is exactly what Zero Church is all about. I'd like to think it is what many Americans are concerned with in these post 9/11 days. But while the new emphasis on spirituality comes off as being dull or self-congrulatory with many people, it sure doesn't with Maggie and Suzzy Roche. If you take a couple of smart women who are sassy, quirky, witty, goofy, lovely, empathetic, sexy AND spiritual, you end up with someone worth spending time with.
And that's where I am. This is not the way I usually relate to music, but I have been listening to Zero Church--and nothing else--for three days. Each time through, I like it a little better.
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10 of 12 people found the following review helpful By WrtnWrd on May 16, 2002
Format: Audio CD
Suzzy & Maggie Roche's Zero Church, a by-product of a Harvard seminar, is a collection of cross-cultural prayers set to music. The music, as would be expected, is contemplative folk scored for the purity of the Roche voices. There's a plea for the fallen of "New York City". (Originally to be released on September 11, Zero Church was pulled so Suzzy Roche could respond to the plane attacks in song). A Vietnam veteran seeks redemption in "A Prayer". The last night of Matthew Shephard's life is imagined as a series of what "Sounds" he might have heard as he waited for death. These are the most plaintive, and moving, of the eighteen tracks, though different listeners will respond with varying degrees of intensity depending on a multitude of factors: religious upbringing, ethnic background, historical interest. The CD, while gracious and always interesting, is a mite soporific to my tastes. It's so genteel, in fact, that when a Hebrew chant is introduced in "Aveenu Malcainu", it's as bracing and sneaky as guitar solo.
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