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Cherryholmes

Cherryholmes – 2005 (Skaggs Family)

Reviewed by Kevin Oliver

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CDs by Cherryholmes

A true family band, Cherry-holmes range from 13-year-old Molly Kate on up to Jere "Pops," and the tight familial bonds come through in the music on this new CD.

Produced by Ben Isaacs, this is their first for Ricky Skaggs' label after a handful of independent releases. Those prior albums did well enough that the Arizona-based group is nominated for both Emerging Artist and Entertainer of the Year in this year's IBMA awards, a feat that seems unusual only until the sweetly traditional tones of songs like, "Heart As Cold As Stone," collide with the breakneck picking of the impossibly fast, "Making Time."

The strength of Cherryholmes is in their repertoire of original songs, all of which sound like they could be decades old traditional tunes, and the vocals. Harmonies and leads are well distributed between the girls and boys, resulting in a widely varied sound.

Murder ballads, driving bluegrass progressions, and well-placed classics by The Louvin Brothers, Hazel Dickens and Bill Monroe round out this nearly flawless effort.