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Mountain Heart

The Journey – 2001 (Doobie Shea)

Reviewed by George Hauenstein

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CDs by Mountain Heart

Mountain Heart's second album is an all-gospel collection thoroughly enjoyable from start to finish. Well-schooled in the Doyle Lawson style-of southern gospel/bluegrass gospel music presentation, three band members are alums of Lawson's Quicksilver group, Mountain Heart deftly mixes strong instrumental work with superb vocals in a package that is a combination of originals and lesser-known spirituals.

Fans of a cappella gospel will appreciate "The Gospel Train" and "Travelin Shoes." "What A Time In Heaven," "I'll Sail Away" and "Wings Of Love" are more traditional sounding bluegrass gospel, fueled by instrumental kick-offs and great harmonies. "The Hill Lone And Gray" is a hauntingly beautiful tune showcasing Steve Gulley's tremendous lead singing and Barry Abernathy's restrained banjo work.

Though they work within and respect the traditions of those who built the music, the band has built their own identifiable sound. Their new gospel album reinforces Mountain Heart as one of the finest young bands on the bluegrass scene today.