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Country Standard Time News Magazine – updated December 9, 2016
 

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CD Reviews and Upcoming Releases

CD review - Gunslinger Garth Brooks If naming your release Gunslinger, you'd better let it rip and go for a harder country sound, especially if donning a black cowboy hat on the cover. The reality does not exactly match that sentiment for Garth Brooks, but at times he comes mighty close. »»»
CD review - Christmas Together Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood Listening to Garth Brooks' and Trisha Yearwood's new holiday album of (mostly) duets, one is once again reminded how Yearwood is one of the most underrated country artists, whereas - if we're being honest - Brooks is a little on the overrated side. »»»
CD review - The Life and Songs of Emmylou Harris Various Artists Perhaps no artist is so ingrained in the very fibre of modern Americana more than Emmylou Harris. Her presence is everywhere - in the music she makes on her own, in the music she shares with others, in the music that feature finds her simply settled in the background sharing supporting vocals or merely lending inspiration. »»»
CD review - Mountain Voodoo Balsam Range Balsam Range has been at the heart of mainstream bluegrass music since its debut in 2007. Mountain Voodoo is an ambitious, and successful, summation of the first decade. Vocal harmonies provide the core of Balsam Range's music. It's mountain music, to be sure, with lots of vocal range. »»»
CD review - Cosmic Hallelujah Kenny Chesney The gospel, per Kenny Chesney's pseudo-spiritually-titled album, Cosmic Hallelujah, is that the world is too crazy to make any sense of, and the only logical response is to drink more alcohol. (So, don't be surprised if there are more arrests for public intoxication at the performer's upcoming concert dates). »»»
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The Devil Makes Three examine salvation, sin – Country music feature - The Devil Makes Three examine salvation, sin For nearly a decade and a half, The Devil Makes Three has concocted an amazing blend of bluegrass, folk, country, blues, rockabilly and whatever happens to bubble to the surface, and applied it liberally to their songwriting ethic. »»»
For Shires, home is where the family lies – Country music feature - For Shires, home is where the family lies Mercy Rose Isbell recently celebrated her first birthday and, ironically, the album she helped inspire has just been released. Synchronicity is a beautiful thing. Mercy Rose is, of course, the daughter of singer/songwriters Jason Isbell and Amanda Shires, two of the most gifted Americana artists working today... »»»
The Earls of Leicester rattle and roar – Country music feature - The Earls of Leicester rattle and roar Something old is new again. The Earls of Leicester, fresh from their first release in late 2014 and the IBMA Entertainer of the Year Award for 2015, followed that remarkable success with "Rattle and Roar." »»»
Watkins does all the right things on "Young in All the Wrong Ways" – Country music feature - Watkins does all the right things on "Young in All the Wrong Ways" In the nine years since Nickel Creek declared itself on indefinite hiatus, violinist/vocalist Sara Watkins has been relentlessly busy. She discovered a new pathway for her harmonic gifts with Sarah Jarosz and Aoife O'Donovan in the vocal trio I'm With Her. »»»
Lonely Heartstring Band navigates "Deep Waters" – Country music feature - Lonely Heartstring Band navigates "Deep Waters" Four years after forming in Boston and a year after receiving their first major award (an IBMA Momentum nod), when most bands might be expected to have two or three already in circulation, the Lonely Heartstring Band finally has its first full-length CD release "Deep Waters" (Rounder) out on the street. »»»
Bush tells the story – Country music feature - Bush tells the story Sam Bush is back with a new record, "Storyman," not that he ever went anywhere. Identified with The Telluride Bluegrass Festival, which he has played in one form or another for each year but one, he helped define the new grass sound. »»»
Concert Review: Over the Rhine presents its version of holiday songs – Shortly before performing Merle Haggard's downer Christmas song, "If We Make It Through December," Over The Rhine co-leader Linford Detweiler remarked how his wife (and other half of OTR) Karin Bergquist recently described the act's holiday sounds as "reality Christmas music." And when a duo includes a song like "My... »»»