The Gibson Brothers, Eric and Leigh, have been
at this bluegrass music thing for more than 15 years now, and they
certainly have a lot to show for it. Iron & Diamonds is
the brothers' eighth release since their debut Underneath A Harvest
Moon way back in 1994. The boys have been able to stay true to
their roots and have created some of the more memorable traditional-style
bluegrass records of the past decade. Their latest release is no exception.
The opening banjo rolls and rolling rhythms of "Cabin Down Below"
firmly establish the high lonesome sound and trad credentials of the
group and little on the record seems to challenge that beginning.
"One Step Closer To The Grave" is mid-tempo 'grass at its
finest, mingling yearning fiddle lines with dark lyrics and brilliant
harmonies for a very classic feel. The boys evoke a more classic Nashville
sound on the mournful "The Other Side Of Town" and focus
on their vocal harmonies on "Lonely Me, Lonely You," which
sounds like the glory days of the Statler Brothers. "Picker's
Blues" takes things back to bluegrass, but with a decidedly brushy
feeling, making a song that is filled with dynamics and lovely rolling
melodies and countermelodies. The Gibson Brothers dig deep into the
gospel roots of American bluegrass on the tightly woven harmonies
and excellent phrasing of "Gone Home."
For many years The Gibson Brothers have been steadfast in their songwriting
and playing and have released some of the finest little-known more
traditional bluegrass records. Iron & Diamonds is certainly
no exception, melding all the Americana styles into one beautiful
trip down music row. These songs will have you tapping your feet,
smiling to yourself at the beauty and simplicity of life presented,
and heartbroken with the aching tales they sometimes tell. This is
great music with a classic feel that will appeal to bluegrass fans
and those looking for something more honest and friendly in their
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