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Jason & the Scorchers
Midnight Roads & Stages Seen,  Mammoth Records CDx2 354 980 180-2, 1998, (49:09, 48:32)

 Hot live album from the original alt-country band

Even after all of these years, Jason & the Scorchers are still the hottest thing outa Nashville. And nothing captures their heat better than a live recording like this one.

 Midnight Roads & Stages Seen is a career spanning retrospective of a group that has stayed true to its unique combination of hard rock and honky tonk music. Led by the saucy vocals of Jason Ringenberg, this album races through twenty-three songs, and sounds like the soundtrack to a movie about an outsider cowboy musician.

While many have attempted to mix a little country into their rock (and vice versa), nobody has ever been able to create the kind of mix that the Scorchers have come up with. To enjoy this band, you have to love both rock and country. You can’t just pull the parts you like from it; you must chomp down the whole spicy enchilada.

This is probably why the group hasn’t ever attained the commercial success they deserve. They aren’t country, and they aren’t rock. They’re something utterly original.

Nonetheless, they’ve been granted the grace to continue to record, and it’s still fun to hear the band rave on Dylan tune (another individualist, by the way) with "Absolutely Sweet Marie" or quiet things down with "Ocean of Doubt."

For the older fans, this is a nice way to gather up the highlights into one package. For newbies, here is your chance to catch what you’ve been missing. Get ’em while they’re still hot!– Dan MacIntosh

 Glenn Brooks says... Definitely a hot album! There is also an accompanying concert video, in case you can’t get enough. The best way to get it is through the Mammoth Records web site.

Also, check out our review of a previous Jason album.

Copyright © 1998 Peppercorn Press. All rights reserved.