Sign up for newsletter
 

The Jayhawks

Music From the North Country: The Jayhawks Anthology – 2009 (American/Legacy)

Reviewed by Dan MacIntosh

Find it on Amazon

Subscribe to Country CD Reviews CD Reviews

CDs by The Jayhawks

Listening back to this Jayhawks collection is a reminder that the late Minnesota band may be closer to a reincarnation of The Byrds than we realize. The down home country of Falling Star, which can be found on a second bonus disc, hearkens back to those days when The Byrds where country-rock's sweethearts of the rodeo. Yet Save It For A Rainy Day recalls The Byrds at their jangle-rock best.

However, this package's extra disc also includes an early version of Tailspin with a dirty electric guitar part, which shows an entirely different side of the band altogether. Be thankful they never moved in that direction! And while this harder rocking take is a curiosity, it doesn't highlight The Jayhawks' greatest musical characteristic, which is making the listener as emotional as a little girl. The best examples of this emotive trait can be found in Blue and I'd Run Away. Nevertheless, it's kind of sad to hear Mark Olson's love ode to Victoria Williams with Miss Williams Guitar, especially now that they are no longer a couple.

In addition to the 40 songs contained on this healthy 2-CD collection, there is also a DVD with 9 videos. The Jayhawks will likely never receive the sort of box set treatment that's been awarded The Byrds, so this is the closest these fine musicians will get to their rightful start treatment. Listening to it right now, and don't save it for a rainy day.