Raising Sand

Studio Album by released in 2007
Raising Sand's tracklist:
Rich Woman
Killing the Blues
Sister Rosetta Goes Before Us
Polly Come Home
Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On)
Through the Morning, Through the Night
Please Read the Letter
Trampled Rose
Fortune Teller
Stick With Me Baby
Let Your Loss Be Your Lesson
Your Long Journey

Raising Sand review

United musical impulse

Usually, collaborations of musicians belonging to different genres carry some purely commercial character. Sometimes they do it to promote a young performer, sometimes to renew the public's interest to an aging artist. There are not so many appropriate causes you can think of but none of them suite to the project of hard rocker Robert Plant and country songstress Alison Krauss. Their team album Raising Sand was made for the sake of the music exclusively. Each of these performers possesses an indisputable authority and each of them reached literally unattainable heights in the world of music as a whole. Of course, Plant's name gives this album a very special weight especially for those who are not quite familiar with the bluegrass and country scene. In the borders of this duet he looks as a senior mentor at the least. But still we should remember that Alison Krauss is a worthy partner indeed. 20 years of successful career behind her shoulders and a rare collection of 20 Grammy Awards on her chimneypiece – isn't that a marker that screams about her talent? In a word, one can fearlessly expect this disc to be extremely attractive. Two strongest vocalists of our world have joined together in united musical impulse.

Amalgamation of extremes

Nevertheless, for many music lovers this duet may seem not really convincing. In what way the opposites can be crossbred? The question finds an answer on the very first track Rich Woman. Plant sings a leading part and Krauss performs backing vocals. Their voices sound almost equipotent; Plant's part was brought in the foreground just a little bit farther. The song as such is a light blues rock played in a tempo which stands somewhere between fast and mid one. By the way, the album's stylistics looks sufficiently ambiguous. All the songs represented here belong to various authors and basically differ in style and inner atmosphere a lot. There are country, folk, blues and even gospel compositions here. However, it must be mentioned that all the songs are joined together by a very specific sound that smoothes down all the stylistic roughness. Quite often the arrangements of the tracks have a slightly mysterious and even haunting sound. But on the other hand the minimal set of instruments that was used on this record makes Rising Sand very homelike, soft and live album. Extremes are the essence of this record; everything is based on merging of polar things here.

Unique material

In fact, Raising Sand is a result of collaboration of three stars. A well-known producer T Bone Burnett also guided the record process along with Plant and Krauss. It was him who selected this excellent collection of songs and it was him who managed to blend all these genres into something whole. It is pretty hard to figure out the best tracks of the album as all them sound sufficiently nice but still the most outstanding songs here are those with a slightly mysterious mood, which works really well on Polly Come Home, Trampled Rose or Sister Rosetta Goes Before Us. This is not a matter of personal taste, simply they sound fairly unusual. The basic mass of the material finds itself somewhere between blues, folk and acoustic rock. Such a mixture will surely suite to the tastes of Plant's and Krauss's admirers. There is a plenty of great examples. You may pay attention on a folk song Through The Morning, Through The Night, where Krauss sings lead, Plant's own Please Read The Letter or Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On), which sounds like rockabilly meets psychedelic rock. As a whole, Rising Sand is a very smooth and mild album. There are no loud sounds, screams and noise. Plant and Krauss simply sing beautiful songs that sound similar to their classic woks in a way but at the same time they represent a completely unique and originally arranged material.

Max Rodrigues (06.11.2007)
Rate review3.71
Total votes - 38

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