“Life, Death, Love & Freedom” Ranks #5 in Rolling Stone Year-End List

Rolling Stone magazine’s new year-end double-issue cites “Life, Death, Love & Freedom” as the #5 album of 2008.

The December 25th issue, which features Brad Pitt on the cover, places the critically acclaimed John Mellencamp album just behind My Morning Jacket’s “Evil Urges.” The top three spots are taken by TV on the Radio’s “Dear Science,” Bob Dylan’s “The Bootleg Series, Vol. 8: Tell Tale Signs - Rare and Unreleased 1989-2006” and Lil Wayne’s “Tha Carter III.”

“John Mellencamp’s growling fatalism and T Bone Burnett’s scorched-blues production make this the darkest, most compelling Mellencamp album in years,” said Rolling Stone in the blurb accompanying its prestigious 50 Best Albums of 2008 listing. “It is also the perfect run-up to Election Day: Fourteen songs about a nation going broke and a generation on the ropes.”

The article also singled out “Troubled Land,” and especially its lines “Beware of those who want to harm you/And drag you down to a lower game/Just know the truth is coming” for sounding “like the Election Day we deserved.”

“Troubled Land” also came in at #48 in the magazine’s 100 Best Singles chart.

“This stark heartland rocker offers a clear-eyed view of Bush’s America,” extolled Rolling Stone, adding “but the ending feels like a benediction,” in reference to John's lyric “Just know that truth is coming.”