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Editor's rating: 
 4.0
Sunday, 01 April 2007 ,  Written by K L Poore
John Mellencamp - Freedom's Road
I don’t really know him but I’m pretty sure John Mellencamp is, as my old man used to say, “a stand-up, kiss-my-ass kind of guy,” and his latest release, Freedom’s Road, is a stand-up, kiss-my-ass kind of album. And that’s cool. My friends think I’m crazy because I like JM, but I don’t really know why they don’t like him. Maybe it’s the Cougar thing, or a revolt against the production on “Jack and Diane.” Maybe it’s the plain language of his artistic voice. Or maybe he’s just not cool enough. All I know is when I say something like “Hey, the new Mellencamp’s really good,” I’m greeted with eye rolling and a smug nod. First off: he’s not cool. But I don’t think he’s worried about it. Second, there’s nothing wrong with striving to be your generation’s Woody Guthrie. Any populist ...
Editor's rating: 
 5.0
Wednesday, 16 July 2008 ,  Written by K L Poore
John Mellencamp - Life, Death, Love and Freedom
John Mellencamp’s Life, Death, Love and Freedom is a mature, melancholy and mesmerizing work about all of the aforementioned, especially death.  With emotionally appropriate production from T Bone Burnett LDL&F isn’t exactly “whistling past the graveyard” but it’s about as close as you’ll ever get. After one listen I have resolved never to listen to it: by myself; in the dark; after a really bad day. That it was in a Super HD stereo format that is as pristine and as close to source as you’ll get outside of the studio helped jack up the spooky factor about a gazillion percent. And the Death in the title isn’t merely our returning to dust. While it seems that Mellencamp is looking in a mirror and singing to himself, as on “Longest Days” when he accepts that “sometimes you get sick, and you don’t ...
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