Live

Live

4.7 14
by Alison Krauss & Union Station
     
 

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The first live album from Alison Krauss + Union Station is predictable only its gathering of fine songs and displays of virtuoso musicianship and emotionally charged vocalizing -- that's what we've come to expect from the fiddlin' phenom. But while Krauss's solo star has never shone brighter than in 2002, she frequently yields the spotlight on the double-disc Live<See more details below

Overview

The first live album from Alison Krauss + Union Station is predictable only its gathering of fine songs and displays of virtuoso musicianship and emotionally charged vocalizing -- that's what we've come to expect from the fiddlin' phenom. But while Krauss's solo star has never shone brighter than in 2002, she frequently yields the spotlight on the double-disc Live, which includes two new songs. Jerry Douglas, introduced by Krauss as "the greatest Dobro player the world has ever known," steps out for some mesmerizing picking on the poignant, heart-tugging "A Tribute to Peadur O'Donnell" and the bristling "Monkey Let the Hogs Out," which Union Station mandolin player Dan Tyminski brings home with an urgent vocal. Tyminski later reprises his signature moment from O Brother, Where Art Thou? with a gritty reading of "I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow." Disc 1 ends with Union Station guitarist Ron Block's beautiful ballad "Faraway Land," the title song from his woefully underappreciated 2001 solo album, Faraway Land. Then there's Ms. Krauss herself, whose burnished, calibrated vocals and tasty fiddle work are models of a restraint, revealing the underlying passion by degrees, rather than in one fiery burst. The repertoire here is drawn almost equally from her solo and band albums, and most of the monuments are represented, from breathtaking ballads ("Ghost in This House," "Forget About It," et al.) to hushed, closely harmonized gospel ("Down to the River to Pray") to bluesy, up-tempo numbers that show off Krauss's facility with a swinging a lyric ("Oh, Atlanta"). When all is said and done, Krauss not only reinvigorates the old material, she renders it timeless. This is one powerful live set.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Rick Anderson
Given Alison Krauss' tremendous popularity and her status as the first female bluegrass singer to cross over into genuine pop marketability, and given the fact that her guitarist, Dan Tyminski, is the voice behind "Man of Constant Sorrow" (or at least the version that served as an id�e fixe in the blockbuster movie O Brother, Where Art Thou?), a live album was inevitable. That it should be a two-disc set can simply be chalked up to good luck. Unless you're a bluegrass purist, that is, looking for music that preserves the traditional Appalachian sounds of Ralph Stanley and Bill Monroe. Listeners of that mindset will be bitterly disappointed by the presence of modern singer/songwriter fare ("Lucky One," "Let Me Touch You for a While"), by the drums on "Oh, Atlanta," and, most of all, by those dreadful call-and-response vocals on the chorus of "Man of Constant Sorrow" (which, you can hear them sniff, Tyminski takes at about twice the appropriate speed). All of this would explain why bluegrass purists are no fun to be around and, one suspects, don't have very much fun in private either. The simple fact is that every time Krauss opens her mouth to sing, angels stop what they're doing and take notes. There may be no musical pleasure quite as pure and sweet as listening to Krauss sing "Baby, Now That I've Found You" or "When You Say Nothing at All." And when she starts in on the impossibly beautiful gospel tune "Down to the River to Pray," the effect is almost disturbingly moving. Which brings listeners to the problem with this album, which is the amount of time it spends on stuff other than Alison Krauss singing great songs. The instrumental bits, the Jerry Douglas showcases, and Tyminski's requisite rendition of "Man of Constant Sorrow" are all fine, but they end up feeling like filler. Still, this album can be solidly recommended to modern bluegrass fans in general and to Krauss' many fans in particular.

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Product Details

Release Date:
11/05/2002
Label:
Rounder / Umgd
UPC:
0011661051522
catalogNumber:
610515
Rank:
1672

Related Subjects

Tracks

Disc 1

  1. Let Me Touch You for a While
  2. Choctaw Hayride
  3. The Lucky One
  4. Baby, Now That I've Found You
  5. Bright Sunny South
  6. Every Time You Say Goodbye
  7. Tiny Broken Heart
  8. Cluck Old Hen
  9. Stay
  10. Broadway
  11. Ghost in This House
  12. Forget About It
  13. Faraway Land

Disc 2

  1. A Tribute to Peador O''donnell/Monkey Let the Hogs Out
  2. The Boy Who Wouldn't Hoe Corn
  3. Take Me for Longing
  4. I Am a Man of Constant Sorrow
  5. Maybe
  6. We Hide and Seek
  7. But You Know I Love You
  8. When You Say Nothing at All
  9. New Favorite
  10. Oh, Atlanta
  11. Down to the River to Pray
  12. There Is a Reason

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

Alison Krauss & Union Station   Primary Artist
Alison Krauss   Indexed Contributor,Fiddle,Vocals,Tenor (Vocal)
Jerry Douglas   Dobro
Larry Atamanuik   Percussion,Drums
Barry Bales   Percussion,Bass (Vocal),Drums,Baritone (Vocal),Tenor (Vocal),Acoustic Bass,Electric Upright Bass
Ron Block   Banjo,Guitar,Baritone (Vocal),Tenor (Vocal)
Dan Tyminski   Guitar,Mandolin,Vocals,Baritone (Vocal),Tenor (Vocal)

Technical Credits

Alison Krauss   Arranger,Producer
Neal Cappellino   Engineer
Gary Paczosa   Arranger,Engineer
Doug Sax   Mastering
Carter Stanley   Arranger
Frank Edmonson   Monitor Engineer
Don Schlitz   Composer
Union Station   Arranger,Producer
Robert Hadley   Mastering
Tracy Martinson   Engineer

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