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Robin & Linda Williams

Devil of a Dream – 1998 (Sugar Hill)

Reviewed by Robert Wooldridge

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CDs by Robin & Linda Williams

With brilliant songwriting and an impressive lineup of guest musicians, Robin and Linda Williams delivered an impressive album that is intriguing from start to finish.

Most songs (co-written with Jerome Clark) deal with substantial subject matter in a poignant, sometimes haunting fashion. In "Five Rooms," they tell the story of a failed relationship and how one must survive in a home that was once "full of hope when love bloomed/Now it's empty as a tomb." The death of a troubled, aloof singer-songwriter is lamented in "The Genius" ("It was hard to be his friend/He was trouble without end").

Other highlights include a remake of their "Rolling and Rambling" ("The Death of Hank Williams"), every bit as powerful as Emmylou Harris' more familiar version and a tasteful cover of the Everly Brothers' "I Wonder If I Care as Much."

Stellar musicians like Tim O'Brien, Stuart Duncan and Sammy Shelor compliment the Williams' blend of country, bluegrass, and folk. After 25 years of making music together, Robin and Linda Williams show no signs of fatigue.