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She Loves You -

Date: 09.05.04
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By Joshua Goldstein

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Cases in point: Not only does he tackle Billie Holiday’s landmark “Strange Fruit,” but he brings to it an Abbey Road-era rock heaviness that completely reinvents the song, yet once again underscores its chilling tale. Bleeding “A Love Supreme” into “Please Stay (Once You Go Away), he intertwines the souls of two cosmic ships in the night, John Coltrane and Marvin Gaye. And what he does with Nina Simone’s “Black Is The Color Of My True Love’s Hair” simply has to be heard to be believed. Five guest-vocal spots from Mark Lanegan, including a faithful rendition of Skip James’ “Hard Time Killing Floor,” only enables She Loves You to achieve something greater—an enduring soulfulness.

There was a time, only a few years back, when hard-line old-school Afghan Whigs fans—those who refused to even consider the uptown swagger of the group’s swansong, 1965—doubted whether Dulli’s latter incarnation would be able to achieve the artistic heights/cathartic release of such classics as “What Jail Is Like” and “Going To Town.” Truth be told, the bastard simply can’t help himself.

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