Flatlanders Hills And Valleys

Flatlanders Hills And Valleys
All three principals in this legendary Texan combo are successful singer-songwriters in their own right, so opportunities to record together are limited. This is their first album in five years, and their fourth studio album. Each member has a distinct musical and vocal personality, with Joe Ely as the gritty rocker, Butch Hancock the folkie troubadour and Jimmie Dale Gilmore as the country mystic with the gorgeously hurtin' voice. They trade lead vocals and harmonize in effective fashion, as you might expect considering they first started singing together in the early '70s. Eight of the 13 cuts here are trio co-writes, while Gilmore adapts and arranges Woody Guthrie's "Sowing On The Mountain," an album highlight. The album kicks off with two timely tunes of social commentary, "Homeland Refugee" and "Borderless Love," with the latter's Tex-Mex-flavoured accordion fitting the song's physical setting perfectly. Production duties are handled by Lloyd Maines (Dixie Chicks), and he also adds fluent dobro, pedal steel and acoustic guitar. This is a country folk gem well worth the wait. (New West)