Written By: Jeff Markunas
Label: Frog Pad – Rating:
If you’re a Bluegrass purist, your ears are probably already burning, so stop reading now and the pain will subside. If you’re one of those Morons who finds the phrase “I don’t like Country music” slipping from your lips – take a lesson.
Any kind of music you do “like,” from Heavy Metal to Hip-Hop, IS Country music.
There are only two roots of American music – Country and Blues – every other genre grew from there. Woody and Bob were doing country blues “Raps” decades before Puffy and Jay-Z could talk, let alone rhyme, and Kanye is just an “Urban Cowboy” who’s too dumb to know it.
Metal more your taste? A lot of mainstream metal is just Country licks played full throttle through a Marshall turned up to 12. So here’s my musical advice – GET A CLUE!
Now that I’ve chastised the Mountain Williams’ and the Urban Snobs, maybe I can get back to work. The Yonder Mountain String Band – What a joy to have this group cross my computer desk after all the lackluster and dreary dreck that I’ve sorted through lately.
Young and feisty with lots of “Fire in the Belly,” these guys really know their way around
their instruments, and how to produce a great song. (“Out Of The Blue”) Instrumentally they’re not afraid to take chances, and vocally, they have a solid rock style that’s harmony friendly (the screams you hear in the background are the purists that were too stupid to read the opening).
YMSB does a great job of taking the Roots musical style and propelling it into the 21st century. In my mind, that’s the purpose of all great music – build on the foundation and create a monument for YOUR time, even if it’s only a single brick. YSMB is Good Rockin’ in Bluegrass Country, and did I mention that there are DRUMS on this album (yeah I know it’s mean but it did kill that last Blue Grass Purist).
Check out “Steep Grade, Sharp Curves” – Like all good Bluegrass this album will lift your spirits and Force you to enjoy yourself.
Rock Bottom Line
Not a perfect band or performance, but it’s close! If time and the Music Business are kind, this band will leave quite a mark on contemporary music.
CWG Rating – 4 Guns