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Western Wall

Western Wall: The Tucson Sessions
1999 - with Linda Ronstadt
Produced by Glyn Johns

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Loving The Highway Man
Raise The Dead
For A Dancer
Western Wall
1917
He Was Mine
Sweet Spot
Sisters Of Mercy
Falling Down
Valerie
This Is To Mother You
All I Left Behind
Across The Border

Emmylou Harris once said of her four-shows-a-night salad days that she refused to sing anything on the hit parade, opting only for "bizarre, left-field songs" that "made it hard to make a living." Decades later, Harris still spends a lot of time in left field, and it's those offbeat, haunting gems--more than the classics here from Leonard Cohen or Jackson Browne--that make Western Wall: The Tucson Sessions, her duet album with Linda Ronstadt, so memorable. That, and her exquisitely pained soprano--reminiscent of "cracked crystal," as Linda puts it--nestled up against Ronstadt's thicker, corduroy harmonies. With arrangements that meet somewhere between Harris's Wrecking Ball and Ronstadt's Hasten Down the Wind, the two explore a mood of morose dreaminess, but profound beauty. Ghosts gather here, to the sounds of rattling bones--in songs of abandoned love, of musical giants now gone silent, and of World War I soldiers, who parade from the arms of prostitutes to the arms of death. Left field, dotted with the wreckage of heartache and regret, never sounded better. --Alanna Nash