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Top Ten Tracks 2000 – 2009: #1

March 25, 2010

1.  The Man Comes Around: American IV – The Man Comes Around: Johnny Cash

The suspense is over.  This is without question the best song of the past decade.  No questions.  It is Johnny Cash in the prime of his poetic powers.  This song is prophetic and no one escapes Cash’s chastising story-telling.

Only Johnny Cash can say “whoever is filthy let him be filthy still” and sell millions of records.  Maybe we just don’t get it or don’t want to get it.  Cash doesn’t make the apocalypse a Left Behind embarrassment, he makes it into a penetrating prophecy of doom.  Sonically it is dark, brooding, contemplative, and yet it marches forward with terrible constancy.  It emerges from a man who took in the words of Scripture to the core of his being as if they were a form of genetic code.  They unzipped in his sub-conscious and produced a song that will forever be one of the greatest works of art the world will ever know.  Cash’s voice trembles, strains, pulses as it proclaims the certainty of The Man.  It’s allusions, imagery, and poetics are beyond compare for modern song-writing.  The trademark “chicka-boom” takes on the Revelation of John and the synthesis is heart-melting, mind-splitting, soul-opening majesty.

To the man in black – who praised well the Man in White.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Mike permalink
    March 26, 2010 7:59 am

    I can still hear it echoing off the walls and in the hearts of the 204 Casa house to this day.

  2. April 5, 2010 7:49 pm

    our little cash baby was named appropriately.

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