Album: Various Artists, Sacred Songs for Worrying Times (Righteous)
Friday 26 June 2009
A striking anthology of modern faith-based ruminations, some custom-built to fit the compilation's prescient brief, others sourced with impeccable taste from the likes of The Handsome Family ("Grandmother Waits for You") and Slint singer/guitarist Ryan Driver ("When Were You in Mexico").
Sufjan Stevens' Asthmatic Kitty label furnishes three selections, including Liz Janes' version of the Sacred Harp song "32b Distress", a funereal processional of mountain fiddle drone and musical saw, and Welcome Wagon's "But for You Who Fear My Name", which resembles a revivalist congregation blast of banjo, handclaps and Sally Army horns.
David Arnold's "God Won't Save You Now" opens proceedings, its pessimistic message riding a sluggish gospel-funk roll; but for most of its course, the album's guiding spirits are Hank Williams and Tom Waits, the latter's grizzled Americana offering a touchstone for contributions by the likes of Noah and the Whale. Elsewhere, Richard Hawley covers Mother Maybelle Carter, Malcolm Middleton chips in with a reflective cover of Joan Osborne's "One Of Us", and Field Music preface "You're Not Supposed To" with a lovely hummed run through of "Abide With Me".
Download this: 'God Won't Save You Now', 'But For You Who Fear My Name', 'When Were You in Mexico', 'Trampin'', 'Devil Town'
Grace Dent on TV The Secret Life of the Pub is sexist, ageist and a breath of fresh air
Art Megumi Igarashi criticises Japan's 'backwards' attitude to women's sexual expression
Ray Davies' Sunny Afternoon scoops the most awardsTheatre
Grace DentChannel 4 show proves there's no app for happiness
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Alan Rickman admits editing 'terrible' script with friends in Pizza Hut behind backs of writers on Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves
- 2 Rarest Beanie Baby of them all could be sold for £62,500 on eBay
- 3 Professional big game hunter Ian Gibson crushed to death by elephant during hunt
- 4 Farmer told to tear down mock-Tudor castle after hiding construction behind hay bales
- 5 Rebecca Francis accuses Ricky Gervais of using 'influence' to target female hunters after receiving barrage of death threats
Better Call Saul creator Peter Gould on the creative concerns of a prequel, season 2 and the mind-numbing realities of the small courts
Game of Thrones season 5: Emilia Clarke praises characters who 'accept their femininity'
Britain's Got Talent 2015: RSPCA investigating Marc Metral's miming dog after cruelty complaints
Fifty Shades of Grey movie shows first sex scene 'after 40 minutes'
Glastonbury 2015 tickets: How to make sure you’re successful in Sunday's re-sale
If I’m being racially abused I don’t need a stranger with a saviour complex to rescue me
The only black face in the Ukip manifesto is on the page about overseas aid
Ukip is the only main political party to not address LGBT rights in its manifesto
Food banks: One million Britons will soon be using them, according to Trussell Trust
Religion isn't growing, it is becoming vigorous in its demise, says philosopher AC Grayling
BBC election debate: The one photo that summed up the whole 90-minute leaders debate