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The Louvin Brothers - Weapon Of Prayer

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Weapon Of Prayer

The Louvin Brothers

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The Louvin Brothers recorded this collection of patriotic, often military-themed songs in 1962, a few years before the Vietnam War would politicize and polarize pop music in a manner unimaginable at the time, and for better or worse this set has dated in a way that most of the Louvins' material has not. While Charlie and Ira Louvin are in superb voice as usual, and the production is clean and unobtrusive, capturing the harmonies and ace instrumentalists with appropriate clarity, the songs often sound overly sentimental or jingoistic, and even the often tragic lyrical turns that are the hallmark of the Louvin Brothers' work sound a bit obvious in this context. Much as this album's "The Great Atomic Power" has come to be viewed ironically with time rather than taken at face value, most of these songs (which frankly are not as good as the Louvins' best material) are just overwritten enough to make them difficult to take seriously, and while the songs are performed with obvious sincerity and conviction, that only makes them sound a bit more clunky after the passage of a few decades. There are some lovely moments here, most notably the relatively understated "I Died for the Red, White and Blue" and the traditional-sounding "A Seaman's Girl," but for the most part, Weapon of Prayer doesn't quite hit the target, either as entertainment or patriotism.
© Mark Deming /TiVo

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Weapon Of Prayer

The Louvin Brothers

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1
The Weapon Of Prayer
00:03:15

Charlie Louvin, Composer - Ira Louvin, Composer - The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

2
There's A Grave In The Wave Of The Ocean
00:02:56

Grandpa Jones, Composer - The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

3
At Mail Call Today
00:02:57

Gene Autry, Composer - FRED ROSE, Composer - The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

4
I Died For The Red, White, And Blue
00:03:06

Roy Acuff, Composer - The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

5
Soldier's Last Letter
00:03:29

Redd Stewart, Composer - Ernest Tubb, Composer - The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

6
There's A Star Spangled Banner Waving Somewhere
00:03:05

Shelby Darnell, Composer - The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist - Paul Roberts, Composer

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

7
The Great Atomic Power
00:02:41

Charles Louvin, Composer - Ira Louvin, Composer - The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist - Buddy Bain, Composer

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

8
A Seaman's Girl
00:03:19

The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist - E. Barrett, Composer - F. Cunningham, Composer

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

9
From Mother's Arms To Korea Edit
00:02:10

Charlie Louvin, Composer - Ira Louvin, Composer - The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

10
Robe Of White
00:02:34

Charlie Louvin, Composer - Ira Louvin, Composer - Eddie Hill, Composer - The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

11
Searching For A Soldier's Grave
00:03:06

Roy Acuff, Composer - The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

12
Mother, I Thank You For The Bible You Gave
00:02:40

Charlie Louvin, Arranger, Work Arranger - Ira Louvin, Arranger, Work Arranger - Arranged By, Composer - The Louvin Brothers, MainArtist

(C) 1962 Capitol Records Nashville ℗ 1962 Capitol Records Nashville

Album Description

The Louvin Brothers recorded this collection of patriotic, often military-themed songs in 1962, a few years before the Vietnam War would politicize and polarize pop music in a manner unimaginable at the time, and for better or worse this set has dated in a way that most of the Louvins' material has not. While Charlie and Ira Louvin are in superb voice as usual, and the production is clean and unobtrusive, capturing the harmonies and ace instrumentalists with appropriate clarity, the songs often sound overly sentimental or jingoistic, and even the often tragic lyrical turns that are the hallmark of the Louvin Brothers' work sound a bit obvious in this context. Much as this album's "The Great Atomic Power" has come to be viewed ironically with time rather than taken at face value, most of these songs (which frankly are not as good as the Louvins' best material) are just overwritten enough to make them difficult to take seriously, and while the songs are performed with obvious sincerity and conviction, that only makes them sound a bit more clunky after the passage of a few decades. There are some lovely moments here, most notably the relatively understated "I Died for the Red, White and Blue" and the traditional-sounding "A Seaman's Girl," but for the most part, Weapon of Prayer doesn't quite hit the target, either as entertainment or patriotism.
© Mark Deming /TiVo

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