filed on March 12th, 2009 by Press Officer
Originally appeared on Tricities.com
by Joe Tennis
A big night at the Grammys – with multiple wins – shined more light on the recent vocal combination of Robert Plant singing with Alison Krauss.
A godfather of hard rock, known for a dozen years as the frontman for Led Zeppelin, Plant might, on the surface, seem an unlikely match for Krauss, the angelic voiced fiddler who was once the darling of bluegrass music – and one, too, who dared stretch its limits.
But to know Plant through all the years is to know that the one-of-a-kind crooner has always been up for a musical challenge – and is clearly interested in a variety of styles.
So comes “Raising Sand,” the Grammy-winning duet album of largely acoustic tunes and soft rockers that should not be overlooked by any fan of Led Zeppelin or Krauss.
This pair of tall talents rolls through 13 tracks, skillfully produced by T. Bone Burnett. The hit “Gone Gone Gone” rocks with a funky groove, while “Please Read the Letter” shows a more plaintive side, capable of lifting heartstrings. From “Rich Woman” to “Fortune Teller,” this entire album is a joyous musical journey.
Bottom line: It would be a crime if this pair did not record together again.
Posted in ar2009 |
filed on March 4th, 2009 by Press Officer
Originally appeared on tonight.co.za
By Theresa Smith
(Rating: 4 stars)
Acoustic folk, country and bluegrass stripped to the core and tenderly recrafted.
This is an elegant homage to all that is good about Americana, but you have to wonder whether it would have been noticed by the mainstream if it wasn’t for Robert Plant’s name. Better known as an influential rock singer, Plant has been making serious inroads on the blues/folk scene for years and this Grammy Award-winning collaboration with bluegrass queen, Alison Krauss, is an unusual project that highlights good music over commercial consideration.
It’s an indulgence in that most of the tracks are not the sugary pap we usually hear on our radio stations. The songs are actually excellent re-interpretations (read covers) about dark subjects like saying goodbye, loss and leaving, with some upbeat rock thrown in for good measure.
The banjo on Sister Rosetta Goes Before Us lends the song a whimsical feel, but Krauss’s haunting voice grounds the song, while her fiddle playing on Nothin’ is a subtle counterpoint to the banjo, neither of which can overshadow Plant’s very Led Zep misery as he sings: “Hey mama, when you leave/Don’t leave a thing behind/I don’t want nothing.”
Krauss’s clear soprano is well-matched by her fiddle playing skills as well as the pedal steel guitar used on certain of the tracks and she turns Trampled Rose into a poignant existential lament.
Neither twangs, but they still turn Gone Gone Gone and Please Read the Letter into country songs, reminding us that talent will eventually out. - Theresa Smith
Posted in ar2009 |