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Thursday, July 18, 2024

CD review: Alison Krauss and Union Station

Artist: Alison Krauss and Union Station

Album: Paper Airplane

Label: Rounder

Rating: 2

To say country music darling Alison Krauss and band Union Station know their way around a folksy bluegrass tune is an understatement. Their 2004 Grammy-winning album Raising Sand is all the proof anyone needs that Krauss’ clear, dreamy voice, combined with Union Station’s soulful banjos, fiddles and guitars, is kind of magical. But can they bring anything new to the proverbial table with Paper Airplane, their first album together since their 2004 smash?

Well… not really. Although listeners have plenty of tracks to bask in the perfection of Krauss’ singing, like the wistful “Paper Airplane” and “My Opening Farewell,” she’s not exactly breaking new ground. The songs, while lovely, all start to blend together after a while. Up-tempo bluegrass numbers, led by Union Station’s Dan Tyminski, break up the monotony, but it’s not enough. One wonders why the meandering Krauss and the energetic Union Station can’t find some kind of vocal middle ground. Now that would be country nirvana.

Give these tracks a listen: “Paper Airplane,” “Sinking Stone,” “Dust Bowl Children”

For fans of: Dixie Chicks, Taylor Swift, Carrie Underwood

– Erin Migdol


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