Orion’s Music reviews Raising Sand | ParkRecord.com

Orion’s Music reviews Raising Sand

ALEX HENRY, Contributing Record writer

At first the pairing of Robert Plant and Alison Krauss sounds strange. On one hand you have the hard rocking lover of middle earth front man from one of the first heavy metal bands, Led Zeppelin; On the other, you have the bluegrass sweetheart that helped popularize the genre. But once you’ve listened through to the last song on "Raising Sand," you hope they collaborate like this again and soon. The fact that these two disparate singers blend so well may be attributed to T. Bone Burnett’s skills as a producer. "Raising Sand" is a perfect example of what a producer should do: staying out of the way while gently guiding the artists along. Never before has that balance been more prevalent than in "Raising Sand" — this is one of the most organic and natural sounding albums in a while. The music falls into a kind of gray area between the rock and bluegrass genres. For the most part, the Krauss songs fall on the side of slow-paced traditional bluegrass. The Plant songs range from rockabilly to some slow moody country-tinged numbers. The best parts of "Raising Sand" are when both artists sharing singing duties on a song, since their voices compliment each other remarkably well.

It sounds as if they have been singing together for years. It’s just really nice to hear two extremely talented musicians collaborate so seamlessly, because you can really tell they both enjoyed making this music. In the end, all that care and effort really pays off and rewards anyone who listens with one of the most pleasant surprises of the year.

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