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“What’s unusual is when somebody pulls it off and creates a minor masterpiece of a CD that can nestle in stereo rotation alongside all of your favorites. In the Fertile Gardens of Freedom soars because Payne’s got that elusive intangible “it” factor that can’t be learned or bottled. He slaps the listener upside the head with the opener, “Pitchfork,” and the music escalates for the next 20 minutes. The songs are blunt, edgy, and completely infectious. He doesn’t try too hard and yet delivers in spades here. In the Fertile Gardens of Freedom blooms with rare freshness in a genre that too often totters toward caricature... ...few acts can match the intensity and brilliance found in the first five songs. –– Jeff Prince”
“In The Fertile Gardens Of Freedom is the first album of 800 Mile Monday. If we said it was the first masterpiece on a cd by Daniel Payne, we wouldn't be lying. Listen to this album while driving anywhere in the world and you'll instantly be in Texas . But beware, this isn't your regular country-album - it's a tearjerker that will make you stomp your feet. We for one love the album because of it's refreshing sound and its topics. Keep an eye (and an ear) on this band! Our favorites: Pitchfork, Better Days, Picture Show, They Marched Us Off, Heaven Knows”