Cheap Raising Sand (Music) (Robert Plant, Alison Krauss) Price
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Perhaps only the fantasy duo of King Kong and Bambi could be a more bizarre pairing than Robert Plant and Alison Krauss. Yet on Raising Sand, their haunting and brilliant collaboration, the Led Zeppelin screamer and Nashville's most hypnotic song whisperer seem made for each other. This, however, is not the howling Plant of "Whole Lotta Love," but a far more precise and softer singer than even the one who emerged with Dreamland (2002). No matter that Plant seems so subdued as to be on downers, for that's one of the keys to this most improbable meeting of musical galaxies--almost all of it seems slowed down, out of time, otherworldly, and at times downright David Lynch-ian, the product of an altered consciousness. Yet probably the main reason it all works so well is the choice of producer T Bone Burnette, the third star of the album, who culled mostly lesser-known material from some of the great writers of blues, country, folk, gospel, and R&B, including Tom Waits, Townes Van Zandt, Milt Campbell, the Everly Brothers, Sam Phillips, and A.D. and Rosa Lee Watson. At times, Burnette's spare and deliberate soundscape--incisively crafted by guitarists Marc Ribot and Norman Blake, bassist Dennis Crouch, drummer Jay Bellerose, and multi-instrumentalist Mike Seeger, among others--is nearly as dreamy and subterranean as Daniel Lanois's work with Emmylou Harris (Wrecking Ball). Occasionally, Burnette opts for a fairly straightforward production while still reworking the original song (Plant's own "Please Read the Letter," Mel Tillis's "Stick with Me, Baby"). But much of the new flesh on these old bones is oddly unsettling, if not nightmarish. On the opening track of "Rich Woman," the soft-as-clouds vocals strike an optimistic mood, while the instrumental backing--loose snare, ominous bass line, and insinuating electric guitar lines--create a spooky, sinister undertow. Plant and Krauss trade out the solo and harmony vocals, and while they both venture into new waters here (Krauss as a mainstream blues mama, Plant as a gospel singer and honkytonker), she steals the show in Sam Phillips' new "Sister Rosetta Goes Before Us," where a dramatic violin and tremulous banjo strike a foreboding gypsy tone. When Krauss begins this strange, seductive song in a voice so ethereal that angels will take note, you may stop breathing. That, among other reasons, makes Raising Sand an album to die for. --Alanna Nash
| ARTIST: || Robert Plant, Alison Krauss |
| CATEGORY: || Music |
| MANUFACTURER: || Rounder |
| TYPE: || Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Americana, Contemporary Folk, Contemporary Singer/Songwriter, England, Folk Music, Folk-Rock, Modern Acoustic Blues, Modern Delta Blues, Neo-Traditional Folk, Pop, Rock, Rock/Pop |
| MEDIA: || Audio CD |
| MPN: || 619075 |
| TRACKS: || 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, Nothin', Let Your Loss Be Your Lesson, Your Long Journey |
| # OF MEDIA: || 1 |
| UPC: || 011661907522 |
Customer Review of Raising Sand
A brilliant surprise
Okay, so you knew Robert Plant was unnaturally talented, and you knew Alison Krauss was unnaturally talented, but the two of them together? What an odd pairing. But it turns out this is the best "what the heck" duo since chocolate and peanut butter.
>Listen to it for the first time with your earphones on so you can hear every layer of the instrumentation which perfectly sets the stage for the feel of each song's personality, be filled with each impeccable harmony with these voices which sound like they were made to sing together, like Fred & Ginger circling each other in perfect mirror image and complementation. It's astonishing. They've covered everything from the folksy stuff Alison Krauss usually handles, to the trippy otherworldly vibe you'd get from Led Zeppelin, to flat-out stompin' blues and haunting melodies and things you'd never expect from either of them, but which they carry off so flawlessly you'd think they'd been doing this every day of their lives.
>But no album is perfect, right? There's always a clunker somewhere. Ah, but there is no clunker on this thing. Each track grabs you in its own way, worms its way into your brain and your heart, forces you to respect its power and love its sound. How can you not embrace an album like that? If you like either one of these artists's music, then this will be a purchase you sure won't regret.
I purchased this CD for my husband who likes both artists. He disliked it so much that he said to give it away or throw it away.
Not up to the hype
This is a fine album and I am happy to own it and will occasionally play it but with all the media hype I expected the Album of the Year; and knowing how the media works, come Grammy Time, this will get lots of nominations. Hollywood likes overproduced, glam, easy listening recordings. Too bad for fans of both these great musicians who are much more inspiring on their own.
>I have been a huge fine of Alison Krauss since her very first album and seen her in concert many times. This is one of her weakest albums but she is so darned good and her voice so sweet it still is worth listening to, and a 3 star if only for the novelty pairing with Plant. But she truly shines in a true country-folk, bluegrass setting with her violin and Jerry Douglas' dobro. This album is a huge compromise to her talent.
>Plant is fine with Led Zeppelin but needs to stick with hard rock. Hearing his tempered Zeppelin-esque groaning on tunes like Please Read the Letter is a sad commentary on what a producer thinks music lovers want. And Fortune Teller should be a live loud crowd pleaser not a slick perfect easy listening tune for adult comtemporary radio.
>And how do songs like Please Read the Letter and Polly Come Home get on this album? The slow hollow sound of Cowboy Junkies maybe, but neither Plant nor Krauss should be playing this material. I will skip them on my playlists.
>There are some fine moments on Raising Sand but no fan of Krauss should be giving this 5 star or even 4 star ratings. I waited til after Christmas to purchase this hoping it would show up as a gift. I don't regret buying it because I have all of Krauss's work but otherwise, if you have a tight budget for music, use it on something else, this will not hold the test of time.
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