Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Five Days in July
Genres: Country, Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
Toronto-based Blue Rodeo was purveying its own alternately sunny, grizzled mix of country and rock before the alternative country boomlet made it fashionable, achieving stardom north of the border but nary a blink of recog... more »
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Toronto-based Blue Rodeo was purveying its own alternately sunny, grizzled mix of country and rock before the alternative country boomlet made it fashionable, achieving stardom north of the border but nary a blink of recognition in the U.S. This self-produced 1993 album, recorded mostly live at the band's farm and released the following year in the U.S., brought them belated stateside fans partly because of the alternative country trend, partly because the set was more lyrical and explicit in its country accents. As transparent, and unapologetic, Neil Young fans, this was Blue Rodeo's Harvest, distinguished by the poles of its songwriting and singing team, Jim Cuddy and Greg Keelor. Cuddy's clear, soaring tenor provides a romantic foil for Keelor's smokier, rougher-edged vocals, and together they write brooding rock ballads ("5 Days in May"), ringing, deceptively uptempo loser's anthems ("Hasn't Hit Me Yet"), and convincing country ballads ("Bad Timing"), as well as spacier rock dirges ("What Is This Love," featuring Sarah McLachlan). --Sam Sutherland
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My favorite Blue Rodeo CD...
Ms Diva | Nanaimo, B.C. Canada | 05/27/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"and another disk that's on my "CDs To Take With Me On a Desert Island" list. My favorite original songs on it are Bad Timing, an absolutely heartbreaking ballad about regret and the end of a relationship, and the uptempo Head Over Heels, a fun, sexy, all out terrific song. The band also does a great cover of the song Til I Gain Control Again. There's a nice mix of ballads and uptempo rock/alt country numbers, and the guys are great musicians. I actually think that this CD has a nicer mix/balance of tempos than Casino, the other Blue Rodeo disk I own. There are some terrific guitar bits on this disk (and on Casino). Jim Cuddy's voice is in fine form, and I found I liked Greg Keelor's vocals more than I did on Casino. What's even better is that with the exception of Til I Can Gain Control Again, Cuddy and Keelor write all Blue Rodeo's songs.If you like rock/alt country, -- or maybe even if you don't, and you just appreciate great songs, this album is a must! I know that I've fallen in love with this band, and now I'm going to try to get the rest of their CDs."
musik knutt | West Virginia | 12/24/2005
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Blue Rodeo, out of Canada where they are rightfully GODS, continues to fly under the US radar...what a shame, especially when one stacks Blue Rodeo against lesser talents. "5 Days In July" is the gemstone of this richly talented group. Combining elements of The Eagles, The Byrds, Poco, The Flying Burrito Brothers,twinges of psychedellic memories, 60's style chord work *which comes off VERY nice* and at times, vocal harmonies which bring a sweet hint of The Everly Brothers, this group, which can rock with the best or slow it down to a nice mellow, has a sound of their own. At once, the lyrics are memorable and catchy. The vocalists, Cuddy and Keelor, each bring their own qualities which never grow old with Cuddy having impressive range while Keelor brings at times, a nice raspiness with a clever edge. "Bad Timing", one of the great tunes off this gem, would soar on the country charts if given a chance. With the exception of "Til I Gain Control Again" *brilliantly covered earlier by Crsytal Gayle and later by Willie Nelson*, all the tunes are penned by Cuddy and Keelor, as are their efforts on other Blue Rodeo albums. I had the great pleasure to see/hear this remarkable group at The Ramshead Tavern in Annapolis, Maryland. They DID NOT disappoint. If you're looking for GREAT music outside the usual stuff played endlessly on formatted radio, this is a MUST! I would also suggest their DVD, "Burning Snowmen", which chronicles them over time. If you can, find a way to one of their concerts..."
You, too, can stand transfixed...
Shelley Mckibbon | Halifax, NS | 03/18/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
""Five Days In July" apparently took its name from the length of time it took to record -- which considering the quality of this album is bound to make a lot of other bands tear their hair. It sounds a little more country than earlier efforts, but also contains a lot of moments that are beautiful in their uncategorizability. This album also has the distinction of containing not one but TWO love-gone-right songs by Jim Cuddy, the cheerful man who so often writes about having your heart ripped out. Mind you, "Five Days In May" is so introspective-sounding and its chord progressions are so close to being eerie that I heard it more than once before I realized it had a happy ending. "Head Over Heels," on the other hand, is a purely joyful tune about reunion with the one you love. These two songs also contain two of my favourite Blue Rodeo lyrics: from "Five Days," the almost throwaway "oh, she loved the lines around his mouth" (which to me sounds like growing to love someone more as you grow older together); from "Head Over Heels" the assertion "I'm as steady as rain/ Nothing ever changes in my heart." (I'm a transplanted Maritimer so the simile works for me!) Greg Keelor's stuff on this record is dominated by the moody, introspective material like "Know Where You Go/ Tell Me Your Dream" and benefits from Sarah McLachlan's vocal contributions. The erstwhile "rocker" of the band is clearly not someone you can pigeonhole. He also comes up with the ultimate song about being dumped and realizing it's not so bad: "Hasn't Hit Me Yet," which contains an image every Canadian can relate to: "I stand transfixed beside this streetlight/ Watching the snow fall on this cold December night." By the time Greg starts singing (and Jim joins in) about how out in the middle of Lake Ontario the same snow is falling on the deep silent water, the listener is far more entranced with the "great dark wonder" than sad about whatever relationship just ended. And you know, there is nothing wrong with moving on.Other highlights include "Bad Timing," about one of those situations in which a relationship might have happened if circumstances had allowed -- but they didn't; "Cynthia," which sounds like someone toying with the idea of running away on an adventure; and "English Bay," a romantic-yearning song by Keelor. By the time this album ends, you feel a little like you've gone through a summer day from morning until evening. Not a bad feeling at all."