How to Grow a Woman from the Ground

( 2 )

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Nickel Creek's mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile knows bluegrass from the inside out, and he never forgets where its heart is when he ventures beyond its borders for inspiration. How to Grow a Woman from the Ground, another exciting solo journey on which Thile is joined by a solid quartet of guitar, bass, banjo, and fiddle on a patchwork quilt of songs from various sources (including his own raw-nerve originals about love and loss) that he and his mates translate into bluegrass terms. These sources range from the legendary Spanish Celtic band Milladoira (whose lively instrumental, "O Santo de Polvora," is a moment of pure joy, an irresistible Irish reel full of exuberant, ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
Nickel Creek's mandolin virtuoso Chris Thile knows bluegrass from the inside out, and he never forgets where its heart is when he ventures beyond its borders for inspiration. How to Grow a Woman from the Ground, another exciting solo journey on which Thile is joined by a solid quartet of guitar, bass, banjo, and fiddle on a patchwork quilt of songs from various sources (including his own raw-nerve originals about love and loss) that he and his mates translate into bluegrass terms. These sources range from the legendary Spanish Celtic band Milladoira (whose lively instrumental, "O Santo de Polvora," is a moment of pure joy, an irresistible Irish reel full of exuberant, life-affirming dialogue between the fiddle and banjo) to Jack White's up-tempo, slightly skewed explication of a relationship gone sour in the driving, bluesy "Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground" to a bustling, fiddle-fired workout on Jimmie Rodgers's classic "Brakeman's Blues." The Strokes' "Heart in a Cage" gets countrified and even gospelized in these capable hands, it's one of the album's most vivid moments. But Thile's own songs stand out for their raw intimacy, their breathtaking flights of instrumental musings, and, especially on the desultory, spare "I'm Yours if You Want Me," for the artist's willingness to put the load right on himself. Love may not have been good to him of late, but Thile knows he'll find a soothing balm in the music he was raised on.
All Music Guide - Ronnie D. Lankford
Looking at Chris Thile's recent projects, both the 2004 solo album Deceiver and his recent effort with Nickel Creek, 2005's Why Should the Fire Die?, a listener might experience both trepidation and excitement at the release of his new solo album, How to Grow a Woman from the Ground. This guy's got talent to burn, and in a field -- bluegrass and acoustic music -- that's known for its conservatism, he gleans fresh perspectives from breaking the rules. But Deceiver revealed a talent unraveling in so many different directions that the album finally lacked an identifiable center. Musically, How to Grow a Woman from the Ground is much more organic and cohesive than the eclectic sprawl of Deceiver, relying on acoustic instruments and the talents of guitarist Chris Eldridge, bassist Greg Garrison, banjoist Noam Pikelny, and fiddler Gabe Witcher to hold the sound together. The songs and instrumental selections are also quite strong, though Thile remains eclectic, drawing equally from traditional bluegrass, progressive acoustic, and singer/songwriter traditions. There is a great deal of distance between his cover of Jimmie Rodgers' "Brakeman's Blues" and the surreal lyrics of the title cut, but, thanks to the track sequencing, the album flows well. While both the instrumental pieces and Thile's confessionals are enjoyable, How to Grow a Woman from the Ground's highlights arise from fantastic covers of Jack White's "Dead Leaves and the Dirty Ground" and the traditional "If the Sea Was Whiskey." The surreal lyrics of the title track, written by Tom Brosseau, are accompanied by an equally evocative melody, though the subject matter will probably strike progressive-minded listeners as troubling. How to Grow a Woman from the Ground may not qualify as the most enlightened title of the year, but it does reveal the growth of an adventurous talent.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 9/12/2006
  • Label: Sugarhill
  • UPC: 015891401720
  • Catalog Number: 4017
  • Sales rank: 49,995

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Chris Thile Primary Artist, Mandolin, Vocals
Gabe Witcher Fiddle, Vocals
Greg Garrison Bass, Vocals
Noam Pikelny Banjo, Vocals
Chris Eldridge Guitar, Vocals
Technical Credits
Ronnie McCoury Contributor
Gary Paczosa Mastering
Paul Shelasky Composer
Gillian Welch Composer
Chris Thile Arranger, Composer, Producer
David Rawlings Composer
Gabe Witcher Arranger
Julian Casablancas Composer
Greg Garrison Arranger
Matthew Gephart Engineer
Noam Pikelny Arranger
Loren Witcher Illustrations
Chris Eldridge Arranger
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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 2 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Amazing Musicianship...Chris Thile never disapppoints.

    This CD is fantastic! I just bought it a couple of hours ago and listened to it once. It's now in my CD player again for a second go around. A few words of caution to the young ear and the bluegrass lover: First the young ear: I was quite distraught in Thile's choice to leave the f-bomb in "Heart in a Cage". As one of my greatest musical influences and one of my heroes, I am disappointed. To the bluegrass lover: this is NOT bluegrass. This is Chris Thile. That is the only way I can describe it. It's not like Nickel Creek and it's quite different from his other solo projects. However, I, as an avid Thile fan thouroughly enjoy this CD. I highly recommend getting it. It will probably latch on to you by the second song and whisk you away to Thile-land.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 15, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews