Infamous Stringdusters – Things That Fly

January 01, 1970

(Sugar Hill)


It might seem odd to think about the U2 classic
“In God’s Country” performed by a country/bluegrass band. What’s even odder is
that the version on the latest album by the Infamous Stringdusters really
works. With everyone jumping on the bluegrass train these days it would be easy
to become something of a karaoke band just churning out new fangled versions of
old favorites. It sure would be a lot safer. For years, bluegrass purists have
griped that nu-grass has adulterated the format. At the same time, country
artists have said bluegrass is limiting, distinguished by nasal vocals.


The Infamous Stringdusters prove neither assumption
is true while also showing that mixing traditional bluegrass with nugrass and
straight country plus a bit of rock and folk can combine to make various
format-leaning songs into a cohesive whole on an album. Dierks Bentley, who in June will release the
bluegrass album Up On The Ridge, Aoife
O’Donovan, the powerhouse vocalist behind Crooked Still, and Sarah Siskind, a
folks/roots artist championed by Alison Krauss, guest on this lush album.


Moving from the hearty bluegrass of “You Can’t
Stop The Changes,” to the folk tinged “It’ll Be Alright” – co written by
Siskind – to the rocking U2 cover, the Dusters show that like tasty cuisine,
full-flavored music needs various seasonings to make it truly noteworthy. The
Dusters’ album is going to help lead the way as musicians and listeners alike
rethink bluegrass.


Standout Tracks: “You Can’t Stop
The Changes,” “In God’s Country” NANCY


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