Label: Lost Highway - B0005968-01 ST01 • Format: Vinyl LP, Album • Country: US • Genre: Blues •
Pay the Devilan album-long foray into country music, shouldn't come as a surprise to Van Morrison fans. It's a logical extension of his love affair with American music. Pay the Devil comes from direct sources of inspiration: his father's skiffle band and Ray Charles ' historic forays into country on the two volumes of Modern Sounds in Country and Western Music in While there are Carol Of The Bells - Carpenters - Christmas Portrait horns on Pay the Devilthe layers of strings on top of "fiddles" and honky tonk pianos -- as well as earlier pedal steel styles -- are giveaways.
And Things Have Gone To Pieces - Van Morrison - Pay The Devil there is the voice. Like CharlesMorrison is a soul singer no matter what he sings and he digs into these tomes with fire and the uncommon sweetness of tone and limited timbre that Charles did. But Morrison re-creates these tunes in his own image too. Recorded in Belfast with his own band, Pay the Devil flows seamlessly from start to finish over 15 cuts.
It opens with a killer read of "There Stands the Glass," which is brave considering it's synonymous with Webb Pierce one of two here -- the other is "More and More".
It's drenched in pedal steel, electric guitar, and a pair of basses. The fiddle floats just above the upright piano and a swell of strings in the bridge. It drips with a swaggering loneliness and gets the full weepy treatment with Geraint Watkins ' piano solo.
Once more it's a daring move given how closely associated the song is with George Jones. In the grain of his lionhearted voice, Morrison tears it back to its essence as a country-blues song. Billy Wallace 's "Back Street Affair" is full of barroom soul. Bill Anderson 's "Once a Day" is given the full '60s countrypolitain treatment here, with strings and a full backing chorus that could almost be the Anita Kerr Singers. Morrison 's version touches on the original but brings it home to Belfast.
In addition to the classics, there are three originals here as well. There's the rollicking hillbilly blues of "Playhouse" that growl like the young Conway Twitty and Johnny Horton did.
Then comes the misleading title track. Unable to let his discontent stay out of his records, Morrison once again assails those who would pigeonhole his music, to the tune of a laid-back, shuffling country stroll. It's proof that Morrison can write a solid, traditional honky tonk song worthy of a Jonesor Make The Man Love Me - Dinah Washington - The Jazz Sides Don Gibson.
His vocal digs into the lyrics and sets it in the blanket All Together - Zomes - Zomes the deceptively loose barroom-styled accompaniment. Things Have Gone To Pieces - Van Morrison - Pay The Devil Loveday 's violins add painterly touches to the Watkins piano in the foreground and the guitars fill the rest.
Godden 's pedal steel pleads the country tradition, but Morrison 's singing is so full of sadness, ache, and regret that it actually closes the gap between it and soul music as the record whispers to a shimmering, whispering close.
Blues Classical Country. Electronic Folk International. Jazz Latin New Age. Aggressive Bittersweet Druggy. Energetic Happy Hypnotic. Romantic Sad Sentimental.
Sexy Trippy All Moods. Drinking Hanging Out In Love. Introspection Late Night Partying. Rainy Day Relaxation Road Trip. Romantic Evening Sex All Themes. Features Interviews Lists. Streams Videos All Posts. Genre Country. Track Listing. There Stands the Glass. Russ Hull. Van Morrison. Half as Much. Things Have Gone to Pieces.
Leon Payne. Big Blue Diamonds. Your Cheatin' Heart. Don't You Make Me High. Ken Harris. My Bucket's Got a Hole in It. Clarence Williams. Back Street Affair. Pay the Devil. What Am I Living For? This Has Got to Stop.
Once a Day. Bill Anderson. More and More. Till I Gain Control Again. Rodney Crowell. There Stands the Glass Russ Hull. Spotify Amazon. Playhouse Van Morrison. Pay the Devil Van Morrison.
Once a Day Bill Anderson.