- Released: March 2, 2009
- Label: New West Records
Rolling Stone - 4/1/99, p.943.5 stars (out of 5)
- "...this is a vigorous, invigorating album....No hits, plenty of runs, no errors."
Spin - 5/99, p.149
"...THE MOUNTAIN is like a self-portrait from before Earle was born, so pious it sounds like the vows of a Texas 12-step program, and so great that so what?..."
Entertainment Weekly - 2/19-2/26/99, p.141
"On his first all-bluegrass album, Earle's anarchic spirit roughens up the normally polished McCoury Band, but the result is far from amateurish--rather, it's the sound of consummate pros having a blast..." - Rating: B+
Q - 4/99, p.964 Stars (out of 5)
- "...The 14 tracks here are the among the best Earle has written, staying true to the form's roots whilst adding a rock dynamic..."
CMJ - 1/10/00, p.23
Included in CMJ's "Triple A '99 Top 5" - "...Already the greatest country rocker of his time, Earle has joined up with the greates bluegrass family for [MOUNTAIN]..."
Dirty Linen - 4-5/99, pp.63,67
"...THE MOUNTAIN is arguably one of the finest moments for both Steve Earle and The Del McCoury Band and as enjoyable to listen to as it probably was to make."
Q (Magazine) - p.1084 stars out of 5
-- "[W]hether kicking up a little dust on the rousing 'Texas Eagle' or slipping into more measured, elegiac mode on the outstanding title track, it stands up as one of his finest."
Mojo (Publisher) - 1/00, p.31Ranked #15
in Mojo Magazine's "Best of 1999."
Mojo (Publisher) - 03/99, p.106
"Dramatically different....A fine, timeless album."
Record Collector (magazine) - p.933 stars out of 5
-- "Citing Bill Monroe as his major inspiration, Earle immersed himself in the rudiments and theory of the genre, and many of its finest songs' post-Great Depression dustbowl lyrical concerns."
- 1.Texas Eagle
- 2.Yours Forever Blue
- 3.Carrie Brown
- 4.I'm Still In Love With You
- 5.The Graveyard Shift
- 6.Harlan Man
- 7.The Mountain
- 8.Outlaw's Honeymoon
- 9.Connemara Breakdown
- 10.Leroy's Dustbowl Blues
- 12.Paddy On The Beat
- 13.Long, Lonesome Highway Blues
& The Del McCoury Band.
Steve Earle & The Del McCoury Band: Steve Earle (vocals, electric & high string guitars, mandolin); Del McCoury (vocals, guitar); Ronnie McCoury (vocals, bouzouki, mandolin); Rob McCoury (guitar, banjo); Jason Carter (fiddle); Mike Bub (bass).
Additional personnel includes: Iris Dement (vocals); Sam Bush (mandolin, background vocals); Gene Wooten, Jerry Douglas (dobro); Stuart Duncan (fiddle); Dan Gillis (tin whistle); Emmylou Harris, Kathy Chiavola, Tim O'Brien, Gillian Welch, Dave Rawlings, Lisa Huskey, Taylor Huskey, J.T. Huskey, John Hartford, Meghann Ahern, Marty Stuart, Cowboy Jack Clement, Dave Ferguson, Benny Martin, Peter Rowan (background vocals).
Recorded at Room & Board, Nashville, Tennessee. Includes liner notes by Steve Earle.
All tracks have been digitally mastered using HDCD technology.
THE MOUNTAIN was nominated for the 2000 Grammy Award for Best Bluegrass Album.
Personnel: Steve Earle (vocals, guitar); Del McCoury (vocals, guitar); Ronnie McCoury (vocals); Rob McCoury (banjo); Jason Carter (fiddle); Mike Bub (bass instrument).
Audio Mixers: Ronnie McCoury; Twangtrust.
Earle made his name as a country-rock rebel, but like outlaws before him, his roots are in trad country and folk, and this nod to his roots was inevitable. THE MOUNTAIN is Earle's tribute to bluegrass godfather Bill Monroe, but instead of recording Monroe's songs, our boy wrote a batch of original bluegrass tunes. The songs bear Earle's distinctive stylistic stamp, but one can easily imagine them being played by the old master. Being no dummy, Earle enlisted the aid of the Del McCoury band, one of the finest, most uncompromising contemporary bluegrass bands. His easy interaction with them is a large part of what makes THE MOUNTAIN work. Imagine the traditional acoustic country sound of "The Other Side of Town" from Earle's previous EL CORAZON, extended to a full album and you'll have a pretty accurate picture of the instantly appealing, rootsy delight that is THE MOUNTAIN.