Mark Sinnis | The Undertaker In My Rearview Mirror

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Country: Alt-Country Country: Americana Moods: Type: Acoustic
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The Undertaker In My Rearview Mirror

by Mark Sinnis

The fourth release by original "Cemetery & Western" crooner Mark Sinnis. Take an ominous ride with Sinnis down the New York interstate with "The Undertaker" hot on his trail!
Genre: Country: Alt-Country
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  Song Share Time Download
1. The Undertaker In My Rearview Mirror
4:47 $0.99
2. Injury Home
4:02 $0.99
3. Peep Hole In the Wall
4:28 $0.99
4. 100 Years From Now
4:13 $0.99
5. ‘Cause You Want To
6:15 $0.99
6. Ghost Riders In the Sky
5:59 $0.99
7. Sunday Mourning Train
3:20 $0.99
8. Death Song
6:47 $0.99
9. To Join the Departed In Their Dream
5:31 $0.99
10. Fifty Odd Hours
3:56 $0.99
11. Hills of Decline
4:37 $0.99
12. Deliberate Road That You Are Taking
2:37 $0.99
13. I’ll Have Another Drink of Whiskey, ‘Cause Death Is Not So Far Away
5:51 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
The fourth release by original "Cemetery & Western" crooner Mark Sinnis continues his journey into Life, Love, Relationships, and Death. This album explores Sinnis's darker side of Country music with songs like "The Undertaker In My Rearview Mirror", a song about how death always lurks around us. The album also contains two unique renditions of classic country songs "Ghost Riders In The Sky", and "Fifty Odd Hours" (Sixteen Tons). With "Ghost Riders In The Sky" Sinnis takes you on a dark ride in the sky right out of a Clint Eastwood spaghetti western. "Fifty Odd Hours" is a modern spin on the classic "Sixteen Tons" that would surely make the original author Merle Travis proud. Mark Sinnis prides himself in starting his own genre called "Cemetery & Western" which is a modern style that combines the best of Gothic and Country music to create his fresh new sound; "The Undertaker In My Rearview Mirror" surly solidifies this. The CD contains 13 tracks.



to write a review

Mick Mercer

I’m not too surprised by the title as things have moved far beyond prolific recently and into shady deals done at crossroads amidst the faint whiff of sulphur. Sitting around this office you find CD-shaped gentlemen by the name of “11 Cemetery & Western Classics”, “The Night’s Last Tomorrow”, “A Southern Tale”, “Realize And It’s Gone”, all great albums released by Mark under his own name or Ninth House, and during the past few years. The man is on fire, or soon will be. Most of the usual suspects are there as musical muscle and they’re on fine form.

It starts brilliantly with ‘The Undertaker In My Rearview Mirror’ that could accurately be called part ‘Ringo’ by Lorne Greene due to the vocal stoicism, part ‘Sympathy For The Devil’ by The Rolling Stones as I keep exposing a ‘woo woo’ to burst out. Given the ‘cemetery & western’ tag Mark likes it’s just as well his voice can sound grave.

“As I drive faster I must confess
I wish I was on my way to Memphis
I'm just about ready for a long stray whim
Hurry up and wait I've got my life in tow
And the Sisters of Mercy on the radio
Then all of a sudden it appeared in front of me…”

He escapes, but it’s a close thing and ‘Injury Home’ is a touch more molten melodic as it ambles amiably, head full of storms and surrounded by protective piano. The recurring ‘Peep Hole In The Wall’ flow is almost drowsy but still robust it keeps a subtle vigour in the supportive lyrical tone. ‘100 Years From Now’ is a neatly sawn country tinkler, with a warm heart, and then we revisit two tracks from “Realize And It’s Gone.” A sleeker ‘’Cause You Want To’ is beautiful, ‘Ghost Riders In The Sky’ swirlier and grander and somewhere upon high Cash is tapping an elegant toe. He then drizzles stylish vocals over the eagerly lilting ‘Sunday Mourning Train’ albeit with a measured gloomy tread, and that phrase again, a long stray whim: I don’t know this. Very sweet song.

‘Death Song’ is sparse but reverberates with the simple guitar, overbearing lyrical tumours, misery and sorrow battling it out together. ‘To Join The Departed In Their Dream’ is almost joined to it, equally grief-stricken and both have added vocals by Randi Russo, like some harmoniously harrowing ghost. I gather ‘Fifty Odd Hours’ is ancient but here strolls playfully on light feet into a woozy barroom waltz in slow motion, ‘Hills Of Decline’ is sublimely gentle and almost miniscule even though the themes are huge, complete with engaging whistling and brass, like a spaghetti western waiting to kick off.

“Ride through the darkness
Through the madness in your mind
Through all that life hands us
Look for what little shelter you can find.”

Interestingly ‘Deliberate Road That You Are Taking’ references the opening track as it lumbers brusquely along, with the lap steel invigorating a spry ‘I’ll Have Another Drink Of Whiskey, ’Cause Death Is Not So Far Away’ which has a simple enough burst of happy reality: “every day above ground is a good day.”

Pretty much any of the songs would make a perfect closer on an album because the final words are usually emphatic about a sense of closure, be it good or bad, and in this case it has a sense of relief, having come full circle from the fear at the start to the casual celebration of survival to finish. More importantly, this is another wonderful album from Mark, and he’s up the with the very best consistent songwriters we have today. I just hope some people take this review seriously and start investigating his work. It’s quality through and through. And then through some more again.

Dr. john/ The Aquarian

The Undertaker In My Rearview Mirror
Mark Sinnis, frontman for cemetery and western band Ninth House, has released an album that contains new compositions, covers and updated acoustic versions of previously recorded Ninth House favorites, countrified even further with honky-tonk piano, electric and slide guitars. Sinnis continues expounding his obsession with the many ways that the concept of death informs and shapes our viewpoints and our lives. The presence of titles like “Sunday Mourning Train,” “Hills of Decline” and “100 Years From Now” suggest this preoccupation with morbid themes.

The title track is a new, melodious narrative, partly spoken, partly sung in old-school country style and relates the melancholy ruminations of someone who spends a lot of time behind the wheel. It features a slide guitar that creates an eerie feeling to accompany the driver’s grim thoughts. Besides his own songs, also included are covers like “Ghost Riders In The Sky” and reinterpretations of other musicians’ works. A fabulous example is “Fifty Odd Hours,” which is a rewrite of the 1950s great antique classic “Sixteen Tons,” by Tennessee Ernie Ford.

Both “Death Song”—borrowed from the repertoire of Sinnis’ first band, the Apostates—and the newly composed sequel, “Departed,” are performed as duets featuring the exquisitely sweet voice of frequent collaborator Randi Russo, whose accompaniment has the effect of emotionally charging Sinnis’ rich, deep vocals to previously unattained heights.

Sinnis never fails to bring up the traditional theme of the ill consequences and the consolations derived from booze, so the 13-track closes the album with “I’ll Have Another Drink of Whiskey,” a barroom style sing-along.

Mark Sinnis has once again released a polished and highly listenable collection of old, new and neatly integrated country, folk and Goth rock featuring his polished baritone, fine arrangements, delicious melodies and thoughtful lyrics that reflect his love and mastery of American roots music.