Two impressive releases graced my mailbox this month - one from a Old Timey super group of sorts and another from my native state of Colorado. Who knew I'd get so lucky at the close of Summer 2013 to discover two albums that appeal to both of my primitive American Natures - Old Timey and Roots Country. One thing is for certain -there's some great American Roots music on tap. Read on...
The first release is from Old Buck (self titled)- a gathering of four monster instrumentalists and masters of Old Time Roots music that came together in Spring 2013. Though the style they play reminds more of an elegant doe in the woods rather than an a wiley white stag; dare I say a smooth sipping whiskey vs. the fabled Autumn Leaf mountain brew where you take a snort, change color and fall (!) The picking offered up here is wonderfully done and leads to countless repeated listens. The group tackles familiar and not so familiar fiddle tunes and Smokey Mountain flavored music that is as authentic as the Appalachian soil and our American ancestors that spawned them. Riley Baugus, THE acclaimed clawhammer banjo master you may recognize as the man who was coaxed into shouting "Cuckoo!" on the Cold Mountain soundtrack as well as contributing his five stringed talents to Alison Krauss and Robert Plant's "Raising Sand" is a real presence here, as well as noted Clifftop, West Virginia's fiddle contest winner Emily Schaad, guitarist/mandolinist Debra Clifford of the Lonesome Sisters and string bassist Sabra Guzman formerly of Old Sledge. Simply put - this group find four masters of their craft honoring American Roots music like few can. Favorite tracks include Chilly Winds, Nancy Ann and a great version of False Hearted Lover's Blues- though there isn't a bad one in the bunch. Highly Recommended for all Roots music and string band enthusiasts. Visit them online at OldBuckMusic.com.
The second release is an EP from Ft. Collins Colorado Country and Roots music-smiths Finnders and Youngberg titled"I Don't Want Love You Won't Give Until I Cry" - a great listen that not only reminds me of my native Rocky Mountains but forges into some newgrass territory with folk, bluegrass and classic country influences. The group consists of Mike Finders on guitar and vocals, Erin Youngberg on bass and vocals, fiddler Ryan Drickey, Rich Zimmerman on Mandolin and Aaron Youngberg on banjo and pedal steel. Yes. Pedal Steel - a wonderful contribution to their moody folk and bluegrass flavored music that adds a great vibe to what you'll hear on this disc. Erin Youngberg's vocal stylings are by far one of my favorite aspects of this group, as soothing as sweet cream over hot cornbread at times and haunting at others. The groups time honored sound has a great modern twist to it that would appeal to a broader audience than say something comparable to straight forward bluegrass and classic country- and they do what they do very well. I encourage you all to hear them for yourselves...I wouldn't be surprised if this group takes off and becomes one of the new staples of the genre. Hip writing, strong performances and a cool vibe to top it off. My one complaint? I was pissed that I only heard six songs! I want more!!! (chant with me...FULL LENGTH! FULL LENGTH!) Favorite tracks include Diner and the title track that will hurt my delicate wrists if I type it again. Get to know this very talented group on the web at FinndersandYoungberg.com- oh yeah, and buy this disc!
For information about the two groups above visit www.HearthMusic.com