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Ghosts of the Great Highway

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Editors’ Notes

Fans of Mark Kozelek who have yet to sit down with a Sun Kil Moon recording may be pleased to know that it's not really a big departure from his previous projects, except that Ghosts Of The Great Highway contains no cover songs. Though Kozelek has a penchant for reworking other people's tunes, everything here is original and beautifully heartbreaking — especially "Carry Me Ohio." It's so equally pretty and powerful, you just might wish it were longer than six minutes and 21 seconds as it mixes rich, vintage, guitar tones with innovatively detuned arpeggios and elongated, unpredictable and sometimes angular guitar solos — all contrasted nicely with Kozelek's mellow baritone that slips into momentary falsetto parts, sounding as easy on the ears as any of Neil Young's classics. Kozelek's lyrics throughout are meditative, as in the acoustic opener "Glen Tipton" where from verse to verse he remembers his father staying up late watching television alone, a bygone friend who ran a donut shop, and the first time he ever destroyed a girl's heart. "Duk Koo Kim" is a bewitching epic that doesn't lose any of its magic during its 14 minute and 32 second entirety.

Customer Reviews

Sun Kil Moon at their most haunting and powerful

This album was previously available on iTunes, only without the epic Duk Koo Kim (an omission that gave the song a bit more mystique and popularity than it deserved, though it's a strong track). Its inclusion, though, is crucial to supplying the final bit of pavement to this highway through singer Mark Kozelek's memory and imagination. The album can occasionally slow to a near sandstill, only to be jump-started once again with a track like Salvador Sanchez or Lily and Parrots. The gem in this treasure trove, though, is Carry Me Ohio, a swansong to a love long gone that should crack the heart of anyone who has thought, even once, that a relationship could never end. It's not always easy hearing this much lament. But it's hard to think of a more apt voice to bring it to us than Kozolek's.

Without words

No description I could render is worthy of this album. It's one of the best records put out in my lifetime. I'm usually a rock & alt-country fan, so this was definitely off the beaten path for me, but a journey well worth the travel. Astonishingly beautiful (but that's still not an apt description).

Mark Kozelek is Amazing

A tip: if you're trying to decide when to first listen to this cd, do so on a long stretch of highway, late afternoon, in the the summer. Another tip: If this is your first album by Mark Kozelek, be sure to check out Red House Painters, and his solo work!!!!

Biography

Formed: 2002 in San Francisco, CA

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '00s, '10s

After dissolving his previous band, Red House Painters, singer/songwriter Mark Kozelek resurfaced with Sun Kil Moon, refining and expanding the luminous acoustic balladry and harrowingly intimate lyricism that were the hallmarks of his career to date. Born in Massillon, Ohio, in 1967, Kozelek formed his first band, God Forbid, while in his teens. Upon relocating to Atlanta, he struck up a friendship with drummer Anthony Koutsos, and together they formed the first incarnation of Red House Painters....
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Ghosts of the Great Highway, Sun Kil Moon
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