Blue Highway – Original Traditional (2016) [FLAC 24bit/48kHz]

Blue Highway – Original Traditional (2016)
FLAC (tracks) 24-bit/48 kHz | Time – 37:52 minutes | 463 MB | Genre: Country
Studio Master, Official Digital Download | Digital Booklet, Front Cover | © New Rounder (UMG Account)

Beloved bluegrass supergroup Blue Highway releases its 11th studio album called „Original Traditional“. The 22-year strong powerhouse band was recently voted “Favorite Bluegrass Band Of All Time”’ by the readers of Bluegrass Today. Comprising Tim Srafford,Wayne Taylor,Shawn Lane,Jason Burleson and Gaven Largent,Blue Highway have produced an eclectic mix of songs ,each with their own appeal.Strong vocals and terrific instrumentation,esp banjo (only one all instrumental track) give the listener something different to enjoy on each track.My favorite? Probably Top of the Ridge with guest vocalist Chad Lane a really catchy slow tune with agreat little simple riff.

Blue Highway have been one of the most well-respected bands in bluegrass since they made their debut in 1996, and with the group’s consistent excellence on-stage and in the studio, there hasn’t been much in the way of change in their story. 2016’s Original Traditional actually marks a turning point in Blue Highway’s career as they celebrate their 20th Anniversary — it’s their first album since Dobro master and founding member Rob Ickes left the group, and introduces Gaven Largent, a gifted 19-year-old picker making his debut with the band. (All the more remarkably, this is only the second personnel change in the group’s history, and Largent is the only current member of Blue Highway who didn’t appear on their debut album.) It’s a compliment to Largent to say that many fans might not notice the difference; the young man’s Dobro solos on numbers like “If Lonesome Don’t Kill Me,” “Last Time I’ll Ever Leave This Town,” and “She Ain’t Worth It” are technically impressive and melodically sound, and fit these songs like a glove. Elsewhere, Original Traditional finds Blue Highway doing what’s made them bluegrass legends; the group’s instrumental work is uniformly excellent, with tight ensemble picking and great soloing from Jason Burleson on banjo, Shawn Lane on fiddle and mandolin, and Tim Stafford on guitar. The band’s outstanding harmonies are still in excellent shape (their a cappella version of the gospel standard “Hallelujah” is one of this album’s highlights), and the lead vocals from Stafford, Lane, and bassist Wayne Taylor are strong and sincere. And as the title suggests, Original Traditional testifies to Blue Highway’s gift for bringing fresh ideas to music that still honors the roots of bluegrass, with 11 original songs that deal with subjects as old as love gone wrong, and as urgent as a young man running from a life of abuse and desperation. Not many groups in any genre can sound as fresh and vital after two decades together as Blue Highway do on Original Traditional, and if another 20 years might seem overly optimistic, there’s no audible reason why this group shouldn’t have at least another good decade of heartfelt music in them. ~ Mark Deming

01. Don’t Weep For Me
02. If Lonesome Don’t Kill Me
03. Water From The Stone
04. Last Time I’ll Ever Leave This Town
05. Alexander’s Run
06. Hallelujah
07. What You Wanted
08. The Story Of My Life
09. Wilkes County Clay
10. A Long Row To Hoe
11. She Ain’t Worth It
12. Top Of The Ridge