Whiskeytown -- Pneumonia

Napster

Part of my 2001 Top Ten list as published by Neumu on Jan 11, 2002

What I mean here is the version that was available from Napster: a perfectly-sequenced set of songs that flowed from start to finish. (Which, BTW, also "came" with at least a whole discís worth of outtakes and demos.) The import version, if you will. Imported from the first country ever to suffer a coup díetat from the RIAA. And there is no question that if the album had come out here in that Napster configuration, all of the lukewarm reviews would have been raves. While comparing it to what happened to the U.K Beatles albums in the 1960s is pure heresy, and an imperfect analog it hints at what got lost in the final recording. What finally came out on Lost Highway is still full of great songs, but misses key tracks like "All Choked Up" and "Tilt-a Whirl," and just doesnít quite cohere as an album. Too bad. And with Adams concentrating full-tilt on his new music, Whiskeytown will no doubt just end up a sad legend. Which, after all, just might be what Ryan Adams wants.

--Jim Connelly

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