Various Artists - Broken Hearts & Dirty Windows: Songs Of John Prine

July 9, 2010 by Jason Heller

Released:
June 22, 2010 - Oh Boy

AP Rating:

Releasing a tribute album to yourself on your own label might seem a bit narcissistic, but anyone who knows veteran folkie John Prine can vouch for the man's integrity. Luckily, that integrity bleeds into Broken Hearts & Dirty Windows, a collection of Prine covers on his Oh Boy Records imprint. As irreverent as Prine's clever yet aching songs are, the younger artists on Broken Hearts treat their hero's material with a devotion that runs from the hushed and elegiac (Josh Ritter's "Mexican Home," Justin Vernon of Bon Iver's "Bruised Orange (Chain Of Sorrow)") to the raucous and stomping (Conor Oberst And The Mystic Valley Band's "Wedding Day In Funeralville," Drive-By Truckers' "Daddy's Little Pumpkin"). The disc's major flaw is its least avoidable: In an earnest effort to pay tribute to Prine's bittersweet wit and singular twang, most of his disciples wind up sounding too much like him.

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