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The Louvin Brothers – Satan Is Real (1959/2016) [Official Digital Download 24bit/192kHz]

The Louvin Brothers – Satan Is Real (1959/2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24 bit/192 kHz  | Time – 32:17 minutes | 728 MB | Genre: Country
Studio Masters, Official Digital Download – Source: Qobuz | Front Cover | © Universal Music

This seminal, highly acclaimed 1959 gospel album from mandolin player Ira and guitarist Charlie Louvin remains the most significant release from the influential brothers, best known as a country act and mentioned by Elvis Presley as “his favourite duet.” Satan Is Real is so closely associated with the brothers that its title was borrowed for a 2012 autobiography, co-written by Charlie Louvin not long before his death.

Satan Is Real is the Louvin Brothers’ best known album, largely because of its bold title and its eccentric cover artwork, in which Charlie and Ira Louvin, surrounded by flames symbolizing Hades, pose in front of a huge, cross-eyed model of the Devil. While more than a few hipsters have found an ironic laugh in the album’s over-the-top imagery, one listen to the music confirms that the Louvin Brothers weren’t joking in any way, shape or form. Satan Is Real is an album of fierce, plain spoken sincerity in which the Louvins, who started their career singing gospel material, perform songs that deal with the high stakes of sin and redemption, in which Satan truly does have power to rival the Lord. The opening title track sets the tone for the set, in which a man at a church service tells the congregation how he learned that Satan’s treachery is every bit as real as God’s love, and while not every song is as grim – ‘The River of Jordan’ and ‘There’s a Higher Power’ are positively jaunty – the temptations of life in a fallen world and the consequences of sin are touched upon in nearly every track. The Louvin Brothers wrote many of the most memorable songs on Satan Is Real, and they rarely sounded as heartfelt as on ‘The Christian Life,’ ‘Are You Afraid to Die’ and ‘The Angels Rejoiced Last Night’; as usual, their harmonies are luminously beautiful, and while Ira’s superb mandolin work is missed, the simple arrangements (often incorporating a subdued gospel organ) are perfectly suited to the material. You don’t need to share the Louvin Brothers’ spiritual beliefs to be moved by the grace, beauty and lack of pretension of this music; Satan Is Real is music crafted by true believers sharing their faith, and its power goes beyond Christian doctrine into something at once deeply personal and truly universal, and the result is the Louvin Brothers’ masterpiece.

01 – Satan Is Real
02 – There’s A Higher Power
03 – The Christian Life
04 – The River Of Jordan
05 – The Kneeling Drunkard’s Plea
06 – Are You Afraid To Die
07 – He Can Be Found
08 – Dying From Home, And Lost
09 – The Drunkard’s Doom
10 – Satan’s Jeweled Crown
11 – The Angels Rejoiced Last Night
12 – I’m Ready To Go Home

Produced by Ken Nelson.
Recorded on August 8–10, 1958.
Digitally Remastered.

Charlie Louvin – vocals, guitar
Ira Louvin – vocals, mandolin
George McCormick – guitar, vocals
Jimmy Capps – guitar
Paul Yandell – guitar
Ray Edenton – guitar
Marvin Huges – piano, organ
Lightning Chance – bass
Buddy Harman – drums


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