Andrew Eversole,
(Rivers of Mars, 2008)

Andrew Eversole was born in Harlem, Ky., but it took moving to North Carolina to get him playing mountain music. His influences don't stop there, though. Most of the music on Creature was written by Eversole, with a few exceptions.

At 14 tracks and a little over 50 minutes, Creature really gives you your money's worth. Overall, the engineering is a very good quality -- only one notable song ("Amerika the Beautiful") gave me problems with music overmodulating vocals.

For the most part, the sound is traditional bluegrass, particularly "Old Joe Clark" and "Katy Hill," but there's a progressive or experimental element in some of the selections that may not appeal to some old-school bluegrass fans. Here are some of the more different selections:

"UFOs over Africa" sounds like bluegrass, but this instrumental's got a bit of a an exotic percussive feel that I've not encountered on a tradtional bluegrass CD. "Red Blues" has a lovely Latino flair with a red-hot whining fiddle backing. "The History of Man" is a funky, jazz number with a whole lot of varying sound effects from African to outerspace.

"Amerika the Beautiful" isn't quite what I expected with its eerie spoken-word addition, but I like it. My only wish was that the spoken words were a bit louder, because I had to crank up the volume to hear them. Sarah Strable follows with the correct vocals for the song, but the instrumentation gives us an idea of what the shape our country is in.

If you are a traditional bluegrass fan, listen to the cuts and pick the ones that you're going to like for purchase. For those of us who like different, I suspect like me you are going to enjoy the whole CD.

review by
Becky Kyle

6 September 2008

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