STYLE: Country RATING OUR PRODUCT CODE: 127048-19320 LABEL: Columbia FORMAT: CD Album ITEMS: 2
Reviewed by Dave Brassington
I must admit to being a huge Cash fan and disc one of this two CD set gives us the complete tracks from the 'A Believer Sings The Truth' double album recorded for the small Cachet label in 1979. I have been wondering for years why this has not been re-released before now; well here it is, the great Johnny Cash at his gospel best! The very last track "The Greatest Cowboy Of Them All" is a gem and a song he often featured on his stage shows and which he did re-record on the last album he cut for Mercury in the early '90s. The rest of disc one is a few unreleased tracks, the concluding song "Truth" is something that lay in a can for years! Disc two encompasses some aborted album releases. The opening 12 tracks were recorded in 1975 for a gospel album that was never issued and these tracks have never seen the light of day until now. There is some good stuff here including re-recordings of a couple of his old Sun gospel tracks and the backing is fine and uncluttered. Then we move onto more familiar ground to me with lots of tracks originally meant for an album, 'Johnny Cash Gospel Singer', many of which originally saw the light of day courtesy of a CBS budget release and then Word Records releasing 10 tracks on a 1986 album, 'Believe In Him'. I always enjoyed that album but felt it was a bit short though the very catchy "Another Wide River To Cross" is a gem. The remainder of the tracks on disc two are previously unreleased, including a complete recording of 'Gospel Road' taken from Cash's movie filmed in Israel. All together I find this a stunning release. The liner notes are well researched and I really do feel you get inside the soul of this American musical legend. Here's hoping we eventually get a decent re-issue of the whole 'Gospel Road' project.
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