- Off Center in the Attic - Over the Top Stories;
- The Great Laundry Adventure.
- Helping Schoolchildren Cope with Anger, Second Edition: A Cognitive-Behavioral Intervention;
- Light-Spiritual Wisdom from a Sacred Geometrical Light Being.
Something More Than Free is Jason Isbell's sparest record yet, and feels noncommittal: not quite folk, not quite country, definitely not rock. Jason Isbell's fifth studio album opens with a familiar face. The narrator of the cheery "If It Takes a Lifetime" is a man settling down after years on the road, adjusting to an empty house and a dead-end job while acclimating to the lowered expectations of a lonely life. The song's chief conflict is summed up by the line, "I keep my spirits high, find happiness by and by. What if he hadn't emerged as one of the most popular voices in the thriving Americana movement?
What if he had just settled down in one of the small towns he depicts so vividly in his lyrics?
Train - Something More Lyrics | MetroLyrics
It's a fine song, sporting a spare, defiantly upbeat arrangement and a melody that celebrates rather than laments the narrator's situation. With an eye for telling details that accrue into specific settings and characters, Isbell is one of few songwriters today who can turn a line like, "Working for the county keeps me pissin' clear" into a solid earworm.
- Israel (Creation of the Modern Middle East);
- Interventions: A Life in War and Peace.
- Main Content.
- The Far Side;
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- D.C. Pagers, Inc., d/b/a Superior Service; 01-0162 02/15/02.
And yet, I can't quite shake the feeling that I've heard "If It Takes a Lifetime" before, in some iteration or another, at some point in Isbell's catalog. Five albums plus two live releases into a solo career, any songwriter will find his themes solidifying, his sound coalescing into something recognizable and, if he's lucky, something completely distinctive. These are, as usual, not story-songs so much as they are character sketches: Very little happens beyond a character reflecting on past mistakes and present circumstances, which means the narrative arc—the big decisions, the major conflicts; in short, the action—has been consigned to the distant past.
As a result, Isbell's narrators tend to be surprisingly passive, observing the world without doing very much. It's an odd hull of a song, whose weirdest element is the way it borrows the female hardship of childbirth only to bolster male drama: "All the years I took from her just by being born," the narrator says of his teenage mother, even though he's really talking about the burden of his own guilt.
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The arrangement is spare and languorous, with Derry DeBorja's Mellotron adding a windswept quality to the music. This means as well as our individual behaviour we need new solutions that can get to scale.
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Nenshi: There's something more threatening than Trudeau's blackface
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