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Gibson Brothers - Red Letter Day
Review By Jim Moulton, CSO Contributing Journalist

gibsons8.jpgRed Letter Day is all about the Gibson Brothers (Leigh and Eric) singing their harmonies and an eclectic set of songs. Produced by the brothers with the help of bassist Mike Barber. They do state in the beginning of the liner notes that they are trying something new on this CD, a follow up to the very successful "Long Way Back Home". 

Very heavy on mandolin, there are four different mandolin players on this disc. The featured musicians besides the vocals are Jason Carter on fiddle and Ronnie McCoury on mandolin. Missing in action is very little bluegrass lead guitar, their last recording had Leigh playing lots of leads, on this disc, he sticks mostly to rhythm guitar except on a few songs. 

Red Letter Day is a very simple recording with basically rhythm guitar, banjo, bass and some fiddle and mandolin fills for the most part. The recording sounds like it was recorded in a barn, though it was recorded in the prestigious Sound Emporium in Nashville, a top facility. They are looking for a natural live atmosphere and it comes across well. There are mandolin runs all over the place and some very nice fiddle, just no great bluegrass jamming.

On track seven "We Won't Dance Again" (E Gibson), the sound turns acoustic country with Russ Pahl playing electric guitar and pedal steel. This is a slow beauty with the background vocals of Andrea Zonn adding her sweet touch to the track. I love this track, it really oozes with emotion and Pahl fades it out , jamming with himself on wah guitar and steel. This is a haunting jewel.

"Sam Smith" is a true song by Leigh Gibson about a civil war veteran who had really existed and lived behind the family's farm.

I read a critic's review of this CD and he said the strength of the disc was in the songs, five new ones by the brothers and a mixture by Kieran Kane, Chris Knight, Bruce Robison, Ray Charles, Don Gibson and others.

"As Long As There's You" (Howard,Taylor) is another acoustic country song with Pahl's haunting pedal steel. A great slow tune with finally some real nice lead guitar by Leigh. This song is really moving.

"If I Were You" (Knight) is a real nice slow story song by Chris Knight. Eric's lead vocals are very emotive, pulling you into the song. Great arrangement, love the sound of the banjo in this song.

"It's All Over Now" (Womack and Womack), yes this is the old Stones' rock song done in bluegrass. This honestly does not do anything for me. 

home.jpg - 13317 Bytes There are a total of fifteen tracks on the disc. This is a very organic, non-polished recording with no special effects, just a live sound that sometimes works great. A lot of the mid tempo songs sound alike in delivery. In a lot of ways the recording has more of an old time folk record than bluegrass. They said they wanted to try something different, and it is. You have to give them credit for going out of their comfort zone. They sure can sing.

Street date: 1/24/06

Related Links:
www.gibsonbrothers.com - Official Site

To visit Jim Moulton's website click here

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Real People Reviews

What a great mix on this album, we have had the album via Sugar Hill Music, and I have to say how we all love this album, it is different to all their other ones, and this is good, as we drew a new bunch of listeners. This album is a 5X5 rating and is on our panel for main stream airplay on prime time every day, you are getting a great response here at Radio F.M.Country 97.4 FM 24hr - Australia.
All the best & love to receive great music like this album.
~ Man/Dir; Dave Peters, Chairman.

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