UK's UnCut Magazine: Life, Death, Love And Freedom Review

John Mellencamp
Life Death Love And Freedom
Hear Music
4 Stars
By Adam Sweeting

Springsteen school graduate excels with scary country sound

This bracingly raw set of fables finds the Indiana balladeer digging deeper into the country-blues roots he finds increasingly fascinating, so potently that it's like time-traveling back to the depression and Roosevelt's New Deal. Mellencamp uses traditional forms and mostly acoustic instruments, but his messages are contemporary. ("Foundation is crumbling, the inner structure's gone"), and his songs about death and doubt carry a chilling ring of authenticity. In "Longest Days", he's written one of the most harrowing songs about age and disillusion you'll ever hear. Bleak but brilliant.